Gangzur gewog waits for a boarding facility for Thimyul PS

Tshering Namgyal | Mongar

The development of school education has come a long way. Some schools have introduced relevant subjects like information technology, a few private schools are talking about 21st century curricula like artificial intelligence, robotics, and quantum computing while some are mulling digital textbooks and using laptops or desktops at school to replace notes and textbooks.

The requirement is different in remote schools in the dzongkhags. In Gangzur gewog, Lhuentse, the immediate requirement is a boarding facility for the Thimyul lower secondary school. It is high on the residents’ agenda and they have been pushing for it in every possible forum – gewog tshogde and dzongkhag tshogdu, during meetings with members of parliament and high officials visiting the gewog.

Kilung-Somshing Tshogpa, Sonam Dorji, said the people have been requesting the gewog and dzongkhag, for more than a decade, since the school was established. He said the school benefits students from two chiwogs of Nimshong-Tongling, and Kilung-Somshing. A boarding facility, according to Sonam Dorji, would help the parents of Tsholing village, which is more than three hours’ walk.

There are 12 students studying in higher schools outside the gewog. Similarly, parents of Shawa have also sent their children to boarding schools outside the gewog in the absence of a boarding facility nearby.

The boarding facility would also benefit students from Ney chiwog. Ney Tshogpa Pema Tsheten said students completing primary school from Ney primary school are currently placed in schools in Minjey middle secondary school and Tangmachhu higher secondary school.

Local government officials said it’s not just about the distance but the risk involved in students having to cross streams, especially in summer. The Lingabi stream that flooded in 2019 claimed the lives of a mother and a pregnant daughter. Sonam Dorji said the stream swells suddenly when it rains and the chances of children getting washed away anytime are high.

The need for a bridge over the stream was discussed in the dzongkhag tshogdu last year and the Department of Road officials from Autsho Sub-division proposed Nu 1 million to construct a concrete culvert bridge. It has not come through this financial year.

Parents also submitted the request to Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering during his recent visit to the dzongkhag. Lyonchhen informed the public that the need was genuine and the government would look for funds.

Dzongkhag education officials said a feasibility study was carried out and that they are planning to submit the proposal to the education ministry soon.

There are about 50 students who walk for more than an hour to the Thimyul lower secondary school. The dzongkhag education sector is proposing two 32-bed hostels, each for girls and boys. There are 168 students.