Thiruvananthapuram: Slightly over four lakh
children in Kerala entered the world of learning by joining the first standard Wednesday as schools re-opened after summer vacations.
The occasion was celebrated as "enrollment festival" in all
the primary schools in the length and breadth of the state to
welcome children in a homely and friendly atmosphere.
Class rooms were decorated with colourful banners,
buntings, ribbons and balloons as teachers welcomed the
children by offering sweets and flowers.
Rains that lashed some parts of the state did not dampen
the festive mood as children clad in new clothes were taken
to schools by their parents.
A state that made leaps in literacy and education, Kerala
has a total of 12,642 schools. While 4501 are directly run by
government, 7278 are government aided and 863 unaided schools.
Over the years, there has been a slight decline in
enrollment of students in the first standard, mainly because
most parents prefer two-child norm.
Apart from demographic factors, mushrooming of private
unaided schools are also cited as a reason for the steady
trend of fall in enrollment in state-run and aided schools.