Schools under floodwater: After COVID-19, floods affect teaching of poor schoolchildren in Bihar
PATNA—The continuing floods have badly affected teaching of children in Bihar as hundreds of schools remain under floodwaters.
As per a report, as many as 628 schools located in 12 districts of Bihar still remain shut since they remain submerged in floodwaters with many major rivers such as Ganga, Gandak, Kosi, Bagmati and Kamala Balan flowing over danger mark.
Of these schools, a maximum of 169 schools are located in Bhagalpur district and 120 in Bhojpur while number of schools shut in Patna is 72.
The other flood-hit districts where teaching has been severely affected include Khagaria, Sitamarhi, Madhepura, Munger, Begusarai, Samastipur, Lakhisarai, Sheikhpura and Buxur.
The Bihar government announced reopening of some 72,000 government schools teaching children from Class One to Class Eight from August 16 yet schools in the flood-hit districts have remained closed.
The prevailing situation in the flood-hit areas can be underlined from the fact that teachers and students had to wade through waist-deep water to reach the school premises and unfurl triclour on Independence Day.
The education department authorities are worried over loss of learning due to flooding and have announced to initiate measures to make up the study loss.
“We are very much worried over continuing loss of study due to floods. We are collecting full details from the districts and will try to make up the study loss once the situation gets normal,” education secretary Sanjay Kumar was quoted as saying in the local media.
The fresh development comes amid millions of poor schoolchildren already suffering heavy learning loss during the COVID-19 period. According to an UNICEF estimate, some 7.5 million children suffered learning loss in Bihar this time since only 36.5 per cent of them had internet access while just 3.5 per cent had computer facilities.
Another study conducted by Azim Premji Foundation said some 92 per cent children on an average have lost at least one specific language ability from previous year across all classes and 82 per cent of children on an average has lost at least one specific mathematical ability from the previous year across all classes.
The study was conducted in January this year for Grade One to Grade Six.