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SWIMMING POOL TRAGEDY


Friday, 17 August 2012


It is very sad that a boy drowned in a school swimming pool in Chennai yesterday. The School has given outsource for teaching Swimming for children. Of course, a school cannot do everything, including horse riding, swimming, tree climbing, stitching uniform, guarding the gates and watering the plants, etc. Long back, I understand that the children were taken to play grounds nearby their homes by their parents in the morning to train them physically; I do remember our Ace Tennis Player Vijay Amritraj's mother walked along her son 15 km a day; in villages, there would be big and deep wells were for paddy fields. In those wells, the children were pushed to learn swimming. If anything happened, the matter would not be made into a big issue and surely there was no any blame game. Children were sent to school to gain some knowledge from the teachers and books; exams would be conducted, pass or fail would be the result. Times are changed now drastically. Schools start to teach everything, the above mentioned arts and all. Lot of money is collected by the schools and parents also pay willingly. Skating, Tennis, Basketball, Library, Swimming, Horse Riding, Trekking ..... all facilities are available in most of the schools today. In the olden days, there was no conveyance, people had to walk to schools for 10 to 15 km with or without taking any food in the morning. Even proper dress was not there for students, none had given importance also. If a teacher punishes a student, the student would not tell his parents about the punishment, otherwise, the parents also would join in punishing their ward. That much the parents would believe the teacher and respect was there for the teaching community. Today, the Supreme Court has ordered not to punish any student in school. No teacher punishes students. There is no fear among students today in school classroom. The competition among private schools is heavy. Mushroom like, schools are opened today. To lure the parents and students, schools do any gimmick. To bring more strength to the school, the authorities go down to any level. Schools have buses, vans, cars and autos, only thing, the schools have not purchased Planes and Trains to give maximum facilities to the children. They send these vehicles to any corner even there is only one student. Such a big bus goes to every doorstep to get a student. Parents started to think the buses turned into autos. Once there was a respect for Schools and Teachers. Today, it is upside down. Schools and Teachers are not respected, instead there is a huge respect for students. I don't know whether it is a healthy sign and things are going in a right way. Schools and Teachers have no control over the students today. In most the homes, parents also don't have any control over their own children. They convey the message to the children through their friends or teachers. Teaching has become a thankless job. School authorities should know their limits. They should not go to any extent to lure the children to bring them to school just for the sake of strength. Already many schools face a major problem, i.e. lack of better teachers. In our country, the teachers are paid less thus, no one shows interest towards this profession. Due to this, the direct sufferers are Schools and Students. I see this problem from Kanyakumari to New Delhi and it has become a national issue. That is why, the Digital Teaching System is fast enough to enter into every school even in villages. In Schools, let us give good education, teach the values of Indian Culture, Women Empowerment, Importance for Agriculture, Leadership Qualities, Decision Making and so many to our students / children who come to schools. Let us not take any risk towards the safety of children, who come to schools to shine in their lives. Our duty is to see the children are safe in schools. At the same time, an important one I wish to tell the parents very humbly. Dear Parents, our children are precious to us; very special to us; they are our tomorrow; they are our future. This country is expecting a lot from our children. We will give top priority to the Safety for our children; secondly their Health and finally their Knowledge. Take all these seriously and see their priorities. Many parents want their children should achieve everything what they could not achieve in their days. Our children also have their own priorities and their own interests; hear their views. Everyone cannot become a Doctor or Engineer. They may like to become Kalam, Mylswamy Annadurai, Saina Nehwal, Sachin, Chetan Bhagat, so on. Just for education alone, don't send your children to a very far away school. It is not a healthy one. I see a 4 year old kid travels 20 km in the morning and 20 km in the evening for education, taking lunch box and water can in the bag along with the books, though there are some better KG Schools nearby. Let us not play with the lives of children.

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