A paradise for children

A standard IV student writes nine digit numbers as you read out from memory. A standard III tells multiplication tables up to the numerical 20. This proves that the dropout rate in Government Higher Primary School, Banjara Palya school is nil.

The wall of colourful paintings on social and environment themes gives an idea about the school's activities. H S Parameshaiah, the Head Master of the school says, "We make classes interesting for the children by adopting innovative teaching concepts like storytelling and so on.

parameshaiahOf the 130 students in the school, each is given individual attention. The teachers know everything about each child including his/her difficulty or ease in learning, memory capacity etc. The Head Master says, "Many students come from agricultural families. There are a few students whose parents are soothsayers. Education doesn't figure on their priority list, because the parents are busy trying to make ends meet. So it's up to us to ensure that children come to school."

It is been over 23 years that S Parameshaiah has been teaching at the school. Recollecting his first day at the school, he narrates how the school had only one room which was occupied by the local community for rearing silk worms. Today there are seven rooms. An overhead shelter and cemented floor provides for a clean place for the children to relish the mid-day meal. He explains, "While Akshaya Patra adopts safe and hygienic cooking practices, it will be futile if the children sit on dusty ground and eat the meals."

Once the students pass the standard VII examinations, the certificate is sent directly to the high school they'd be joining. This initiative has proved to be beneficial, especially for the girls since it has helped them complete at least formal schooling. With so much emphasis on education, not surprisingly, the students from this government school top high school as well.

Parameshaiah also teaches his students the importance of environment, the motto being "Save a tree, plant a sapling.' After school, the Head Master is often seen talking to students, enjoying a chat and exchanging ideas. The children are seen laughing and playing. This speaks volumes about the bond between the Head Master and the students which is not limited to classrooms.

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