A High School Story: The Face of Education

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IMPHAL, September 28: Located in one of the far flung villages of Imphal East, Keibi High School is one of the many schools in Manipur that have been struggling to provide education to the children of the village since the last 23 years.

The school was established in year 1969 as a Junior High School as was upgraded to High School in the year 1979. The school has around 300 students and the number of teachers is 19 with 3 non-teaching staff.

The school authorities had applied for conversion into a government school ten times. Memorandums were directly submitted to the Chief Minister of Manipur O Ibobi three times, but so far no action taken up.

While narrating an incident to IFP, the headmaster of the school S. Indrajit said that once when the school staff had gone to request for chalks and blackboard, the government employees rubbished them off saying that they do not give anything to aided schools.

The school has been running only with the salary of two teachers since 2007 which comes to approximately around Rs. 41,000.

To add more woes to the school, it does not possess a patta still as there is a need to pay a premium of Rs.1 lakh.

In a school which has around 300 children and a staff of 23 people including non-teaching staff, one can imagine the struggle and the situation both the students and the staffs are in, which the government seems to be oblivious to like many other issues that are there in the state.

The school had to extend the number of classrooms to accommodate the students, so they had to build kutcha classrooms which becomes all muddy when it rains.

The school is very important to the people of that village. The headmaster explained that the school was started with the sole purpose to give education in the children especially girls because since there was no school in the vicinity of the village during early years, the girls during that time could not attend school and there was hardly any transport facility.

Because of that the women now do not have any academic background. The school lies between two other schools that are approximately 7 kms away from each side, which means if the school did not exist than the children will have to go to these schools for which they will have to cross a hill and which also means that girls will not be able to attend schools. Therefore, the school has more girl students than boys and the children from the adjoining villages also come to this school.

It is the resilience of the teachers that has managed to keep the school going for so many years. It is indeed true that children are the future of our society and our nation, however if the government turns blind eye to such pathetic conditions in which children have to study, there is not much hope of anything becoming of these children leading to never ending seclusion and ignoring of them.

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