Srinagar: Over 1,000 primary schools reopened across Kashmir on Monday, for the first time in two weeks, as part of a slew of measures taken by the government to bring life back on the rails in the Valley. However, as was admitted by the authorities, only a small number of students and less than half of the teaching and other staff had turned up.
In several cases, not a single student attended the school even though the local teaching staff was available. For instance, about a dozen schools were open in southern Shopian district, but attendance of students was zero. Likewise, only a few students turned up in the schools that were decl-ared open in the northern Bandipore district, as local teachers and other staff had reported to duty.
In Anantnag district, 89 out of 1,100 schools had opened, but only 39 students attended their classes. In neighbouring Pulwama district too, the local staff was available but the attendance of students was very thin. In Budgam, four to 12 students turned up in each of the 16 schools which were made functional.
In Srinagar, where 196 out of 500 schools were made functional and 30-40 per cent staff reported for duty, there were hardly any students present.
As per the statistics ma-de available by state director of school education Muhammad Younis Malik at a press meet here, the scene in the schools that reopened in the remaining districts of the Valley was not any different.
However, Mr Malik said the presence of the staff at the primary schools was an encouraging sign and that the government had decided to also reopen all middle level schools across the Valley from Wednesday.
The director of information, Syed Sehrish Asgar, said the Civil Secretariat in Srinagar had recorded 98 per cent attendance while the same is “picking up rapidly” in other government offices....