In the midst of aggressive School Chale Hum (Let’s go to schools), nine government primary schools in chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s home district Sehore have been closed down and 37 merged with other schools for want of students.
According to school education department, the nine schools closed had less than 10 students enrolled in them while 36 more schools with slightly greater number of students enrolled have been merged with other schools. Argument of education department officials notwithstanding, closure of schools at a time when state government has expressed commitment to enroll 100 per cent children in schools has raised serious questions over success of campaigns like School Chale Hum.
District project co-ordinator in the school education department at Sehore Ashok Paradkar, however, said that 18,619 students were given admission in class 1 in the government schools of the district this year while the number of students 18,699 students were given admission in class 6 and 19,210 in class 9. Still, nine schools had to be closed for want of students and 37 merged with other schools for the same reason, he admitted.