Thursday, December 1, 2022

Urgent need to save schools from mob rule

The medium of instruction, nature of government schools and the days of closure fall exclusively under state government realms and the fact that the locals can force a change without any information to the government machinery is too alarming to ignore.

Editorial

The issue of a large number of schools in Dumka and Jamtara having been converted virtually into Urdu schools by the locals without administrative sanction is too serious to be ignored. Local newspapers have reported that more than 30 government schools have started observing holidays on Fridays instead of Sundays in Dumka too. Earlier, such alarming scenarios were reported from Jamtara district too.

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The forced alteration in school calendar has been confirmed by the fact that the midday meals are provided on Sundays and not on Fridays. Several of the schools have reportedly been turned into Urdu Schools without official sanction.

Even the Education department officials have confirmed that they have sought reports on these modifications in the nature of the government schools.

The State Education Minister Jagarnath Mahto has also averred that he has spoken with the relevant officials and has sought a report within a week.

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The medium of instruction, nature of government schools and the days of closure fall exclusively under state government realm and the fact that the locals can force a change without any information to the government machinery is too alarming to ignore.

The argument that the change in demography of the pupils warrants a particular kind of change in the government schools and the norms being followed by them is not only flimsy, but devious and must be handled with urgency and care.

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Forcing schools to follow norms decided by a particular group of people is a direct challenge to the authority of the state. This cannot be allowed. The government must act fast and find out how deep the malaise is in different parts of the state. If needed, an enquiry should be ordered to assess the severity of the malaise of forcing crowd fiat on government schools.

This needs urgent attention from the state government. It is good that the state apparatus has stirred itself and seems keen to correct the situation. The government needs support from all corners.

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