Due to heavy shortage of infrastructure in the schools, many Bihar government schools are either running shifts or are teaching the students in alternate days. Some schools are even scheduling different timing for boys and girls, even in co-education schools. This model has distinctive similarities with the recently introduced ‘odd-even’ formula of car transportation to curb down pollution and congestion in Delhi roads by CM Arvind Kejriwal. Though, this is continuing even before the model from Kejriwal came into picture, in Bihar.
One such school named MD High School at Kanhouli near Baniapur in Saran, is running classes for boys and girls in alternate days. Students of both the genders attend only half the sessions in the entire year. The school administration though said that the entire syllabus is covered even during this short period as academic session for both the genders.
The District Education Officer Awadeshi Bihari of Saran said, “Shortage of classrooms and more than 3000 students on the school rolls are the main reasons behind taking classes on alternate days. Many schools are facing shortage of rooms and we are trying to improve the situation. We expect things will start improving in the coming days.” He further said that he has directed the headmasters of various schools to submit proposals for construction of additional classrooms, if needed to him.
Quite a few schools in Chhapra district are running different schools in shifts at a single building. Many are either on rent or are running in the private premises of people. Taking a gig into the situation one teacher said, “It’s a fine example of odd-even system to decongest schools”. The kids do not seem to bother much about the ongoing system as they have to attend just three days a week in their schools with Sundays being a common holiday.