Vellore kids’ protest to bring their favourite teacher back sees ‘temporary’ success

The students and their parents were upset when a transfer order came in search of Senthil who has been teaching here for the past 11 years.
Vellore Corporation Primary School children staging protest in Chinna Allapuram in Vellore on Tuesday
Vellore Corporation Primary School children staging protest in Chinna Allapuram in Vellore on Tuesday(Photo | Express)

VELLORE: For the students of Government Primary School in Chinna Allapuram of Vellore, their headmaster (in-charge) S Senthil Kumar is not just a teacher; he is a friend who would play with them; a caretaker who would rush them to hospitals in case of emergencies; and a perfect instructor who would handle any subject with ease, thereby not compromising on the syllabus though the institution is short-staffed.

The students and their parents were upset when a transfer order came in search of Senthil who has been teaching here for the past 11 years. On Tuesday, over 300 students from classes 1 to 5, along with their parents, held a protest on the school premises against the order.

Later, the protestors were surprised to hear from the officials that the transfer was voluntary and not mandated by the administration.
The 51-year-old teacher, who confirmed this, told TNIE, “Due to health reasons, I am unable to juggle many responsibilities now and thus asked for a transfer to a smaller school in Saduperi.”

Though the teacher confirmed it was a voluntary transfer, the parents were unwilling to send their kids to the school without Senthil there. Thus, the officials posted him again at the school, but temporarily.

Senthil recalled that the school had only 131 students in 2011. “I brought it to over 350 by improving the overall infrastructure. Many parents had even transferred their children from private schools to this institution,” he said. Senthil’s efforts earned him a Best Teacher Award from the state government and the institution won the Best School Award in 2022.

D Jaffer, a parent, told TNIE, “Senthil sir manages the institution well, despite the shortage of staff. While the school, which has a strength of over 340 students, needs 11 teachers as per the ratio, there are only eight at present. The institution has not had a full-time headmaster for more than a decade now.” He added that Senthil had recently met the higher authorities to get more teachers for the school.

District education officer Dayalan, revenue officer Muralidharan, and police officer Kandaipan visited the school and tried to pacify the protestors but they ended the stir only after two hours when it was  confirmed that Senthil would come back to the school.

The officials have also appointed a new teacher on deputation and a new headmaster (in-charge) has also joined. As of now, Senthil would be assisting the new HM (in-charge).

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