Lingzhi Primary School has 54 students (Photo: Lingzhi Primary School Facebook page)

Thinley Namgay

Between 2012-2018, 14 students from Lingzhi Primary School dropped out.  The matter has become a concern for Thimphu dzongkhag considering the limited number of students studying in this highland community.

Currently, Lingzhi has only five teachers, including the principal, and 54 students from classes PP-VI.

The ninth session of the Thimphu dzongkhag tshogdu decided that Lingzhi Primary School be upgraded to a lower secondary one.

The dzongkhag will send the report to the education ministry for approval.

Lingzhi Gup Wangdi said that there was a need for an upgrade of the school. “It’ll curb the dropout rate of students. While students are studying around the capital after completing class VI, it’s difficult for both parents and students.”

Thimphu dzongkhag’s chief education officer, Tashi Namgyel, said that the school’s situation had improved today but the school needed to upgrade to class VIII.

He said that a new hostel for girls was also being constructed with an indoor toilet facility to make it comfortable for students to study. “Now teachers are also staying in the new government quarters. In the past, teachers used to stay in a house made by the villagers.”

Building new classrooms is also included in the dzongkhag education plan.  Fencing around the school is ongoing.

Health Minister Dechen Wangmo said that Lingzhi school would be one of the pilot schools with proper modern facilities.

“The government wants to make it a model school with all the facilities so that it can be replicated in other schools.  Nutrition is also an issue, and this will also be addressed,” Lyonpo said.

Schools in Barshong (Naro) and Soe will also be upgraded to Class VI.  Barshong and Soe ECR have 10 and six students respectively.