KP Sharma

The government has granted approval for the upgradation of Chali Primary School in Chali Gewog, Mongar to a fully-fledged boarding school.

The decision comes as a relief to the students of the school, who have to travel long way on foot to reach the school every day.

With the school’s up-gradation, the students will no longer be required to undertake long hours of walk to reach the school.

Despite the ministry’s announcement of the upgradation to take effect from August 1, the school encountered difficulties in accommodating the students as per the mentioned date due to the shortage of certain essential facilities.

It is expected that the preparation will be completed and the facilities will be ready by the month of September.

As per the approval letter issued by the Department of School Education, the school administration has identified 90 students who face difficulties travelling to and fro due to long distances.

“The approval is based on the school’s provision of fulfilling all the adequate facilities to meet the boarding school standards as prescribed by the Department of School Education,” the letter stated.

The school’s principal said that there are ongoing electrification works that are expected to be completed soon. 

He said that the school has framed its own boarding policy to ensure fairness and equal opportunity for all the students.

He added that priority to the boarding facility was given to students who have travel more than one hour to school and back, considering family size, route safety, and those living with dependents.

According to principal, about 140 students expressed their interest in boarding facilities, but the school could accommodate only 96 students facing genuine challenges.

Sonam Dhendup, the Chali gup, said that the upgrade would benefit the entire gewog since it is the only school in the gewog.

Established as a primary school around 1995, the school was subsequently upgraded to a lower secondary school (LSS).

It is learnt that the school’s transition to the primary level occurred during the government’s implementation of school mergers or consolidations.

“During its lower secondary phase, the school’s older students could look after the younger ones, but after being reverted to primary school, ensuring the safety of students has become more challenging,” Sonam Dhendup said.