It was a providential escape for 15 class II students of a panchayat union school in Tiruvarur district on Tuesday as the ceiling of their classroom came crashing down minutes after they were moved to another room by an alert teacher.
A total of 62 students are studying in the panchayat union elementary school at Vaduvur Sathanur near Needamangalam in the district. Besides the headmistress, there are two more teachers working in the school. All the schools in the region had been remaining closed due to cyclone Gaja that devastated many parts of Needamangalam taluk. As the district administration announced reopening of all educational institutions, Vaduvur Sathanur school also opened on Tuesday with all the 62 students turning up.
During class hours on Tuesday, the class teacher of Class II noticed that the concrete plaster on the ceiling of the room was on the verge of collapse. Without wasting time, the teacher asked the students numbering around 15 to move to the neighbouring room. To their shock, no sooner had the teacher and the students reached the next room, they heard a loud sound from that classroom. When they checked, the teacher and students found that the entire concrete plaster of the ceiling had come down.
On coming to know about the incident, parents rushed to the school but were relieved to see their wards safe. School headmistress Chitravalli said the higher officials inspected the classroom on being informed by her. “The teacher who handled Class II took a timely decision and acted swiftly that safeguarded our children. We must thank god. Assistant educational officer and other officials visited our school and promised to replace the building”, Chitravalli said. Till a few years ago, the school had only 28 students. However, with the efforts of the villagers, the school now has 62 students, the headmaster said. She pointed out that the villagers had donated various essential things including furniture worth Rs 2 lakh.