Here is an amazing Middle school – the Chennai Corporation Middle School functioning in Maduma Nagar, Perambur, Chennai.
The FREE facilities which are a routine part of their schools include:
· Smart classes in air-conditioned rooms
· A laboratory with 15 computers
· A library with 2700 books
· English Medium teaching from LKG
· Solar power for running the school equipment
· A large space of greenery with lots of plants around the school
This Chennai Perambur Corporation School has been offering the above facilities and a few more as well. Amazing indeed.
The school teachers are fully utilising all the teaching equipment and devices meant for the students to learn in an entertaining manner.
The teachers follow the same technique and training adopted in SSA (Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan) training centres. Visiting any classroom, one can witness the system of learning through practice and execution.
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, or SSA, is an Indian Government programme aimed at the universalisation of elementary education "in a time bound manner", as mandated by the 86th Amendment to the Constitution of India.
For instance, to learn the pronunciation of the English alphabets, the teacher teaches the proper phonetic sounds of the alphabets through song and dance sequence. It is a pleasure to watch the young students pronouncing the letters right and proper in all the classes.
Another surprise was to know the young students thoroughly aware about the usage of articles in the English Language.
A special Mathematics Laboratory functions for teaching the numerals, shapes, and formulae to the students. The mathematics teachers teach by adopting the same simpler and easier teaching system as SSA.
Before beginning to teach each new lesson, the students are taken to the smart class and the lesson is presented to the students through a video clip.
The students are shown video clips on national leaders like Gandhiji or Kamaraj or the characters from the epics of Ramayana or Mahabharatha such as Karna, etc., are shown through related film clips.
The teachers are always extra alert to monitor the students not get an impression the lessons and the text books are a burden. Their devoted interest can be seen when one sees the efforts taken by them for teaching in a practical way to the extent possible.
It is rather rare to see students who are as much enthusiastic inside the class rooms as they are seen outside – one can see that in this school.
There is a hanging garden immediately after the main entrance to the school containing a lot of hanging plant-pots and full of greenery in a large space. A herbal garden where several varieties of herbs are grown, One can see and appreciate the interest and enthusiasm of both the teachers and the students for a number of years in the past while watching the plants and trees growing guava, blackberries and gooseberries.
One of the main features of the school is what is termed `honest stores’ (nermai angadi) which caters to any emergency requirement of some stationery items by the students such as notebooks, pen, pencils or erasers. The students, otherwise, have to go out of the school to buy these items risking getting involved in any accident.
However, this honest store has been set up to avoid this. Nobody is available to monitor this store. The price of each item is listed in the store. The students may take whatever they need and drop the money in the hundi kept near. The prices of the items will remain steady. True to its name, the Honest Store inculcates the virtue of honesty among the students and further, as there is no profit motive in this sore, the prices of the items are reasonably less.
The education council in the school undertakes the periodic monitoring to assess the various developments in schools including the learning skills of the students. The teachers’ trainer, Ms Amalrbavamary, shares that this Perambur Middle School always scores Grade A in every assessment conducted.
The Headmaster V. Ganeshkumar informed that most of the students of the school come from economically backward and poorer sections of the society which encounter a lot of hardships. He further informed that the students may be from families –
· Families with a father with acute drinking habit and ensuing quarrels in the house between parents
· Families where the father died early with his heavy drinking addiction with the student at a young age
· Families where the supposed breadwinner – the father – has run away leaving the wife and children destitute
· Families with the widowed or destitute mother struggling to take care of the kids
So, these students cannot be taught merely by adopting the general teaching technique as they will definitely not grasp. The teachers in this school impact the values and virtues of love and affection (not given to them in the prevailing domestic environment) along with the teaching. In return, the students also respond by showering affection on the teachers. This affectionate bonding between the teachers and the students makes it far easier to teach the lessons.
Many facilities have been set up in the school by the courtesy of the State government as well as the Chennai Metro Corporation.
Apart from this, by joining hands with major industrial giants such as Chennai Petroleum Corporation, traders federations, and service centres, a lot more facilities have been set up in this school. These facilities include among others –
· Drinking water purified through the RO system for all
· The opportunity to learn about computers right from lower classes
· Special English conversation classes
The headmaster further informed that he, along with other school teachers, is very proud indeed to teach the students coming from such students coming from economically and socially challenging domestic set-up/ The main aim of the school is to provide all major facilities available in large privates school to these students as well.