Ludhiana: Govt schools struggle to accommodate students during mid-term exams

Inadequate infrastructure and space at a few government schools in Ludhiana forced students to take their exams outdoors on the floor or benches
Social distancing and mask norms being flouted as students enter the examination centre at Government School, PAU, in Ludhiana on Monday. (Harsimar Pal SIngh/HT)
Social distancing and mask norms being flouted as students enter the examination centre at Government School, PAU, in Ludhiana on Monday. (Harsimar Pal SIngh/HT)
Published on Sep 14, 2021 12:58 AM IST
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By Nikhil Sharma, Ludhiana

In the absence of space and adequate infrastructure, a few government schools were seen struggling to accommodate students who turned up to take their mid-term exams on Monday .

At these schools, students had to take the exams outdoors while sitting on mats on the floor or on benches. This is the first time that students appeared for exams in the physical mode after schools reopened since they were shut down in view of the pandemic outbreak.

There was heavy rush at the schools and some students were also seen without masks.

The education department has been pushing schools to ensure maximum enrolment, but adequate infrastructure to manage a large student strength is not available at some of these institutes.

Out of 2,188 students enrolled in Classes 3 to 5 at Government Primary School, Giaspura, a total of 2,142 appeared for the exams on Monday.

Students there were seen taking the exams on benches outdoors.

“We require more rooms as the enrolment is continuously increasing. Though we are getting grants from the education department and also a few renowned private firms, we still need more space,” said Nisha Rani, head teacher of GPS, Giaspura.

Meanwhile, the situation was no different in Government High School, Gaispura, where over 70 students were seen taking examinations in a classroom despite exams being held in two shifts.

While exams for Classes 8 and 10 were conducted in the first shift, Classes 6,7 and 9 appeared in the second.

“Our school has been jam packed after students from nearby private schools took admission here following the Covid outbreak. There is also shortage of staff ,” a teacher at GHS, Gaispura, said.

On visiting Punjab Agricultural University primary school, Mangat-1, a few students were seen taking exams sitting on the floor.

Heavy rush was also witnessed at PAU Government School, where over 5,000 students are enrolled including 1,560 from Classes from 1 to 5.

“Not all the students were attending school as their parents are reluctant to send them. But most of them turned up, leading to heavy rush,” said principal Sanjeev Thapar.

Despite numerous efforts, district education officer Lakhvir Singh Samra could not be reached for comments.

The district education department had announced on Saturday the datesheet for the exams, which is being conducted for students of Classes 3 to 10 and Class 12.

The mid-term exams are aimed towards preparing students of Classes 3, 5, 8 and 10 for the National Achievement Survey (NAS) and for the annual final exams in March 2022.

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Saturday, October 16, 2021