Teacher renovates school lab with late husband’s insurance money
Manisha Singh, chemistry teacher in a Lucknow School,turned tragedy to a story of hope by gifting her students a lab she renovated with her late husband’s insurance moneyeducation Updated: Jul 24, 2017 19:27 IST
Lucknow Students who found it difficult to carry out chemistry experiments in the government-aided Boys’ Anglo Bengali Intermediate College in Lucknow’s Sunderbagh area now work happily in a state-of-the-art chemistry lab. All of this has been possible because of the kindness of a teacher who has used the insurance money of her late husband to make things better for her little pupils.
Manisha Singh took the brave decision to turn a family tragedy into an opportunity. “After the untimely death of my husband, Nityanand, due to illness on April 25 last year, I came across two life insurance policies in his name. The maturity amount was around Rs 3.5 lakh. I donated the sum to develop the lab,” the 43-year-old said.
Singh’s mother-in-law inaugurated it on July 21.
She said she did not want to keep the money for herself and kept thinking of an appropriate way to use it. “I realised that the sum was big enough to be spent on improving the chemistry lab at the school, where I have been working for a decade now,” Singh, who calls the school her second home, said.
“Every day, I spend several hours there. The students are like my own children. Non-availability of facilities at the lab upset me, but arranging for resources was a problem. Once I had the money, I approached the school management, who happily accepted my proposal,” she added.
She said the renovation would have happened sooner but for another unfortunate event in her family. “Soon after my husband’s death, my daughter was injured in an accident. I had to take leave for six months to look after her. This delayed the work,” she said.
Singh said the lab now had advanced equipment, not available even in some of the top private sector schools.
“I am making every possible effort to ensure that this serves as an example for improving the education standards in schools that are attended by students from economically-weak families. This way, they can compete well with other students,” she added.
Singh said some of her friends and acquaintances have also volunteered to help the school.
Boys’ Anglo Bengali College is a century-old linguistic minority school. Admitting boys initially it takes in girls now as well.
About 700 students study in the school.
Government schools in India often lack the basic of infrastructure and have crammed classrooms, leaky roofs, stinking toilets, missing libraries and absence of clean drinking water. They compound the inequalities of an education system already plagued by absentee teachers and high drop-out rates.