NAGAPATTINAM: At a time when incidents of students resorting to violence abound, forcing even the education minister to recently step in and warn children against it, a group of Class XII students bade farewell to their government school here by giving it a makeover.
Footing the expenses themselves, the students not only stopped at painting their classrooms and the compound wall, but honoured their teachers as well before parting ways.
Pooling in money to procure painting material, the 58-member strong student group whitewashed three of their classrooms and readied the blackboard at the government higher secondary school in Kadinalvayal. They also painted its compound wall and adorned it with Tirukkural couplets.
"We boys took care of two classrooms, and the girls took care of the third one. We love and respect our school and our teachers. It gave us a good education and inculcated in us the right values. Hence we wanted to part in the best way possible," said D Rajadurai, one of the outgoing Class 12 students.
There are 301 students in the school, including 161 girls. Of them, 58, including 34 girls, were pursuing Class XII in the school that was established in 1924. The students also honoured their teachers with shawls on 'Farewell Day', which was held on Wednesday, and handed over '5,000 that they had collected, to the school.
"We are overwhelmed by what our students did. We feel content that we raised them and instilled them with moral values. All of them will do well," said A Vadivelu, a science teacher at the school.
While headmaster G Perumal pointed to how the school achieved 100 per cent pass percentage and expressed confidence of a repeat this year as well, the parent-teacher association pointed to the shortage for staff and infrastructure.
"There is only teacher dedicated for the higher secondary classes, and the parent-teacher association fills up the vacancies on a temporary basis in accordance with the requirements. We need at least six classrooms for the students pursuing higher secondary education. We also need laboratories. We are appointing as many as ten teachers at minimal pay. The School Education Department must appoint more teachers and add infrastructure," said Pon Dharmadurai, the president of the parent-teacher association.
On the students’ parting deed, Dharmadurai said, "What they did will linger longer in their memories than the marks they will secure."