Students hit hard by frequent strikes, curfew in Kashmir

Protests coupled with strikes and curfew in the Kashmir Valley have hit the students hard with schools contemplating extra classes and opting for E-lectures to make up for the loss.

Srinagar: Protests coupled with strikes
and curfew in the Kashmir Valley have hit the students hard
with schools contemplating extra classes and opting for
E-lectures to make up for the loss.

The Jammu and Kashmir Education Department is planning
to compensate for the loss by extra and special classes. Some
schools are also opting for E-lectures that are distributed to
the students through Internet.
"I have directed the concerned to organise special and
extra classes to complete the loss of the academic session.
The students should in their own interests attend the school
regularly and devote their time for studies so that they are
able to complete their syllabus and compete with others,"
Minister for Education and Public Enterprises, Peerzada
Mohammad Syeed said.

Notices by many schools in the local dailies here ask
the students to complete some part of the syllabus at home and
consult the subject teacher for help, if accessible.

Principal of Delhi Public School, Kashmir, K K Sharma
noted that students have suffered a lot in the last one month
when schools remained closed for 20 days.

He said the school, however, is doing its best to
compensate for the loss and keep the students right on track
with e-lectures distributed to them frequently.

"Students are suffering a lot, particularly the ones
who have to appear in board exams. We are frequently providing
them with electronic lectures and home assignments so that
they remain in touch with studies," he said.

Sanaa, a Class XI student studying in DPS said, "Our
school has started web classes which I guess are a good way to
cope with the situation but not everyone has a computer or
Internet connection at home."
A similar scenario prevailed in the Valley during the
2008 Amarnath land row agitation sparked by a government order
to transfer about 40 hectares of forest land to the shrine
board. The order was later revoked on July 1.

Schools and colleges remained closed for almost two
months then.

"We will try to compensate like we did during the
Amarnath land row in 2008. It was a two month strike. If need
be, we will take extra classes by the cooperation from both
the teachers as well as the students," Secretary School
Education, G A Pir told agency.

Following the killing of 17-year-old Tufail Ahmad
Mattoo allegedly by security forces on June 11, the Valley
witnessed a series of strikes, demonstrations and later curfew
was clamped which disrupted normal life.

Nuzhat Fatima, a chemistry lecturer at the Government
Girls` Higher Secondary school, Bandipore said, "Class XII
students have a lot of syllabus which is difficult to complete
if the spate of curfew and hartals continues. Term exams for
the Class XI have been postponed. When would they take the
Term 1 and when would the Term 2 exams be taken."

"After a winter break of about two-and-a-half months,
the schools were closed and reopened a couple of times,
considering the long winter season this year. This followed by
the teachers strikes, employees strikes, official holidays
and hartals disturbed the entire schedule of students," a
parent of a student studying in Presentation Convent school
said.

"I am not able to concentrate on studies due to the
frequent breaks. I am worried that I wouldn`t get time to
complete my syllabus of the next semester," Naureen Farooq, a
student of journalism in Islamic University said.

"Such a long period of strikes is frustrating.We
joined in April and studied for two months...June and July is
almost negligible," Fatima, a Class X student, said.
With some schools following the CBSE pattern of
education rather than Jammu and Kashmir Board of School
Education, the students of such schools seem to be more
apprehensive.

"Being CBSE students we are bound to suffer because
the state board may reduce the syllabus seeing the situation
around but we cannot expect such a relaxation," a student of
Delhi Public School said.

The Ministry for Education held a meeting of the
officers of the Education Department on July 12 to discuss
threadbare the prevailing scenario due to which valuable study
time of the children was lost.

Academic activities in particular have been
adversely affected by the ongoing strikes and as such the
students may not be able to complete their syllabus in time,
an official spokesman said.

PTI

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