Students walk more than three hours to reach school today

Nima | Gelephu

Students of Jangchubling Middle Secondary School in Chhuzom, Sarpang, who stay around the school with relatives or walk to school today, are expected to stay in a hostel from next year.

The school was upgraded this year from a lower secondary school and it would have boarding facilities next year.

Many parents are happy about the boarding facility.

Walking to school and back home in monsoon was risky for the students and parents.

During monsoon, parents drop the children to school and take them home in turns.

Chhuzom Gup, Bishnu Prasad Rai, said many parents wanted the school upgraded with a boarding facility. “It would also help the students receive quality education.”

He said that although the gewog is centrally located, some students had to walk to school for about 15km, as villages are scattered.

Many parents preferred enrolling their children at Jangchubling Middle Secondary School because they could meet their children while coming to gewog for some works.

“There are autonomous and central schools in urban areas. Chhuzom is a remote gewog and students here deserve boarding facility,” the gup said.

A 12-unit classroom, principal quarter, hostels, and laboratory constructions are planned and expected to complete in 2021.

The budget to develop the required infrastructure is approved.

The school used temporary structures as science laboratory for the first batch of class nine students this year. The practical classes were done only for biology subject this academic session.

While school authorities claimed there are adequate laboratory apparatus required for the new batch of students, students said the laboratory was not equipped with the required apparatus.

Meanwhile, gup Bishnu Prasad said few girls had to discontinue schooling for the lack of proper care in the past.

“Parents couldn’t give them proper guidance. Now parents would be less worried and there would be less disciplinary problems,” he said. “Moreover, children were not matured enough to stay away from home. They are sent to other schools at a vulnerable stage.”

All central schools and higher secondary schools are located almost a day’s journey away from the gewog and parents from Chhuzom had to bear additional expenses. There were also reports of students facing difficulty in studies because of the sudden change in the weather.

The school’s principal, Sonam Wangchuk, said the up-gradation would reduce pressure on the schools in urban areas, Gelephu and Sarpang. “It would make education affordable for the parents and children of the gewog.”

There are 323 students at Jangchubling MSS today.