This school has some similarities with Aamir Khans’s Taare Zameen Par. Idukki is the country’s first child-friendly district banning corporal punishment in all educational institutions. But what should the teachers do if schoolchildren commit grievous mistakes? The headmistress of Model Residential School in Pynavu, Idukki, has shown the way, touching many little hearts.
When a teacher reported that Rs 650 was missing from the staff room, her colleagues were literally shocked. They
all joined their heads and tried to work out many ideas to crack the case. But none of them impressed headmistress Meenakshikutty Amma.
Amma called an emergency assembly to announce the serious issue. After announcing it she said she herself would take the ‘punishment’ for her children’s wrong doing. She immediately took a long stick and caned herself till she bled. Upset and hurt, she retired to her room in the school.
Within 10 minutes, two children were at her room with the missing money.
Later, when many insisted that Amma reveal the students’ names, she said:
"They wept in my lap and admitted their mistake. I could not think of any other punishment than this." She refused to identify them.
As soon as the story of Amma’s self-torture spread, congratulatulatory notes began pouring in. The first one to ring up
the principal was State Education Minister MA Baby. Baby offered to send her a special prize. But Amma refused to take any credit, saying she did not do anything extraordinary but only acted according to her conscience.
However, the headmistress asked the minister to help her school by improving the infrastructure. She gave him a demand list over the phone.
The first item on the list, an LCD projector, will be reaching the school next week.
If there is a will there is a way, the teacher has taught the little ones in style.
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights had announced the first child-friendly district only two weeks back.