EVEN AS the proposal is yet to take off in 17 schools seven months after the order was issued, the Chandigarh Administration on Thursday issued an order to open playgrounds of all 110 govenment schools for the benefit of children staying in neighbourhoods near the schools. The children will be able to play here after school hours.
Following complaints by residents that there are no lighting facilities at the playgrounds of 17 government schools that were opened by the MC last year, Mayor Arun Sood in a meeting with the education and finance secretary Sarvjit Singh Thursday proposed that floodlights be installed at the schools. Singh issued orders that playgrounds at all 110 government schools should be opened and floodlights could be installed there.
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“In 2012-13, the Municipal Corporation and UT administration had proposed to open the Government Senior Secondary School of Sector 21 on pilot basis. The proposal failed to take off as the administration had decided to provide guards and proper fencing which wasn’t done,” said Mukesh Bassi, local councillor.
Facing flak for not being able to work on their pilot project, the MC had last year decided to open playgrounds at 17 government schools for the children, though most of them remain out of bounds for children. As per the guidelines, two guards were to be provided by the administration and a physical education teacher by the school. A first-aid kit was also said to be made available. The proposal is yet to take off.
Director (school education) Rubinderjit Singh Brar said work on levelling and fencing was in progress at these 17 schools.
“The work of fencing has been completed while that of levelling in the grounds will take another 15 days to be completed. I had ordered all principals to keep the schools open for the children,” added Brar.
Chief Engineer Mukesh Anand has been given directives to install floodlights.
Councillor Mukesh Bassi said, “I have been hearing for the past five years that government schools will be opened. But nothing happens on ground. While school authorities say that children can damage school property on the other hand, the administration never worked to provide any guards, as decided. These orders are a mere formality.”
Municipal Commissioner Baldeo Purushartha said that they had made a token provision in the budget this time, for spending money on the basic infrastructure at the playgrounds wherever it was required.
Vishnu Sharma, a resident of Sector 22 said, “School authorities often create a fuss in opening the school’s playground stating that the school property may get damaged. An inspection should be done.”
7 sports complexes planned in city
The UT Administration is in the process of constructing seven sports complex at various locations of the city wherein indoor stadiums, swimming pools would be provided. The complexes would be open to children, too.