Madurai: Parents allege unfair treatment of class 12 students suspended for bursting firecrackers

A parent alleged the School Management Council (SMC) member kept the students away from the class while the headmaster denied they were suspended. 

Published: 26th October 2022 03:47 PM  |   Last Updated: 26th October 2022 03:47 PM   |  A+A-

School, Education, right to education

Image for representational purpose. (Express Illustration)

Express News Service

MADURAI: As many as thirteen class 12 students at Government Higher Secondary School in Samayanallur in Tamil Nadu were suspended through an oral order by a School Management Council (SMC) member for bursting crackers inside the school.

The students were also made to sit separately on the school premises and were not allowed to enter their respective classes.

A parent of one of the suspended students said that following an allegation that the 13 boys had burst crackers on an open terrace on October 13, an SMC member had asked the students not to come back to school as they had been suspended. "She also told the students to come back to school only for taking exams," the parent added.

On October 17, the parents of the children met the SMC member and Headmaster Pandiyaraja asking them to revoke the suspension decision. The parents also warned of staging protests if their demand was not met.

"During that meeting, the SMC member and her husband verbally abused the children," the parent alleged.

After the meeting, the HM allowed the students to come to the school, however, they were not allowed to sit in their classes.

Another parent said the school management had suspended the same students for a week claiming that their hair was not trimmed three months ago.

"The headmaster is a respectable person. But the SMC member and her husband override his authority as he is visually impaired," he alleged.

The parent added that the teachers should guide the students for their class 12 exams. "They also seem to think that we (parents) are their slaves. Most of us are agricultural labourers and we are not educated. So, teachers should adequately guide our children."

Punishing them will only lead to dropping out of school, he added. 

However, the headmaster Pandiyaraja refuted the allegations. "Nobody suspended them. I just made the students sit together in another place so that I can directly supervise them. From October 28 onwards they will be allowed to attend regular classes."

"Regarding the charges against the SMC member, I plan to discuss the issue with the Chief Educational Officer," he added.

While speaking to TNIE, Chief Educational Officer K Karthiga said the main functions of SMC members are to bridge the gap between the school management and parents and ensure the welfare of the children. "Will look into this issue and review the SMC's activities," she promised.

Speaking to TNIE, Director of Thozhamai (an NGO working for Child Rights) A Devaneyan said the suspension of students is a serious punishment and it is prohibited under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009. "This can have dire consequences on the child's education and future. School is a correcting centre, and it should not be run like a police station or court," he added.


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