Now, the schoolchildren are taught lessons in hi-tech classrooms with audio-video teaching aids, said headmaster Lakshmipathi B H.
According to the headmaster, many children from neighbouring villages started showing interest to join this school after coming to know about the facilities there. Word-of-mouth publicity by those who had already joined the school is said to have done the trick. “Our school’s development and education standards are a major pull. We started the classes in June by adhering to SOP guidelines. But because of Covid crisis, the classes are held at community halls, temples and under the trees,” the HM said, adding: “Each teacher has adopted 10 students whom they will give individual attention to. As most of the parents of our students are illiterates, our teachers pay weekly house visits to clear study-related doubts, if any.
Nine months ago, three teachers were appointed to teach English, science, maths, computers, sports and yoga, besides an attender. These appointments are in addition to the six teachers appointed by the government.
“Rs 54,000 is paid towards their (new appointees) salary and this is borne by our forum,” said Raghu Neralagundi, auditor and one of the members of ‘Vana Yatri’. Raghu is a native of Neralagundi where the school is located. Explaining the reason for adopting the school, he said: “The building of my alma mater was crumbling, making it unsuitable to hold classes. So we adopted and modernised it by spending Rs 26 lakh.”
The forum members said they had met education minister S Suresh Kumar and inked an MoU to get Rs 20 lakh matching grants from the government to improve the school. “Being in touch with the minister, we keep updating him about the developments in the campus,” Raghu said.
The forum of adventure enthusiasts has over 80 members from different walks of life — engineers, architects, doctors and the like — with most of them residing in Bengaluru. They visit Neralagundi school during week days to interact with students and teachers. Such visits help them address campus-related issues, if any, and keep the show going on.