247 Govt High Schools Transformed in 2 Phases Under 5T of Govt of Odisha at the tribal district of Sundargarh have given wings to students’ dreams 

Odisha Plus Bureau

Until sometime ago, Karan Oram and Sanjukta Sahu could ill afford to dream of a career in computer science or technology. It wasn’t their fault at all.

For, accessing computers or understanding the nuances of science and technology was far beyond the reach of the Class 10 students from the tribal heartland of Sundargarh district in Odisha.

However, the table seems to have turned these days. While Karan from Deokaranpur Government High School in the remote Bargaon block is determined to become a computer engineer, Sanjukata from the Government Residential Girl’s High School at Jamudihi in the adjoining Koira block wants to become a scientist when she grows up.

Karan Oram a student at Kanakatura Government High School

Karan and Sanjukta are among the hundreds of thousands of students enrolled in government high schools across the Sundargarh district who have been empowered to dream big following the implementation of the Odisha government’s ambitious High School Transformation Programme. The transformation programme under 5T, has brought about sweeping changes in the infrastructure and education environment of government schools across the district.

Class Room under High School Transformation

And the changeover at these temples of learning has just not benefitted the students, it has also received accolades from their parents and guardians for whom providing quality education to children in expensive private schools is an inconceivable thought.

“Our school has been equipped with an advanced computer lab following the high school transformation programme. I am learning power point presentation, animation and a variety of advanced programmes during my regular attendance at the lab. The usage and familiarity with computers has now cemented my dreams of becoming a software engineer,” says Karan with an air of conviction.

“Our school has undergone a sea change in the transformation programme. We are now able to conduct real time practical classes in the advanced science laboratory. Moreover, the access to various scientific equipments and gadgets is giving us the confidence and enhancing our domain knowledge,” says Sanjukta explaining the scientific temper she developed in the lab which made her dream of becoming a scientist in future.

Undoubtedly, the school transformation programme under the 5T initiative of the Odisha government has resulted in a revolutionary change in the status of government schools, not just in Sundargarh district but the entire state at large. A total of 247 Govt schools in Sundargarh district have been given complete face-lift in two phases—67 schools in first phase and more recently, another 180 high schools in the second phase.

“Education brings the biggest transformation in life. As school time is the best time in life, make appropriate use of this valuable time to create a new identity for you, your family and Odisha,” said Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik in his address to the students on the sidelines of a programme where he dedicated the transformed high schools.

The High School Transformation programme, carried out under the direction of 5T Secretary VK Pandian, is ensuring an all-round holistic development of the schools. Not only the infrastructure of the schools are being revamped and modernized, the transformation also focuses on massive improvement in teaching pedagogy and school environment as well.

The schools are now boasting of smart classrooms, smart boards, advanced science labs, computer labs, modern library and reading room, e-Libraries & ICT Lab etc have helped in changing the academic infrastructure of the schools while focusing on the health and hygiene of the students with the construction of developed playgrounds, clean drinking water and washrooms with 24×7 water supply.

This has just not created opportunities for boosting talent among the students, but the introduction of modern gadgets and equipments have infused new vigour among the teachers in imparting quality education.

A key attraction of the transformation programme is the introduction of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) model advanced science lab which is enabling the students to have a better understanding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics right from High School level through the use of models and equipments.

STEM model advanced science lab

The labs are also equipped with telescope, microscope, models of human anatomy, plant and animal cell models, while chemicals have been provided to conduct soil testing and various other experiments. Moreover, the students are now conducting electrical and robotic experiments in the labs.

To impart learning in computer applications, the schools are equipped with computer lab with internet connectivity which helps access information beyond textbooks thereby introducing the students of the high schools from the rural pockets to the digital world.

Laxman Oram

“Earlier the classrooms looked drab with paint peeling off the walls. Now the look and feel of the school has changed which is encouraging us to come everyday,” said Laxman Oram, a student at Kanakatura government high school in Hemgir block.

Expressing their gratitude to the Odisha government for extending the new facilities at their school, Monalisa Behera and Aisa Kujur, students from the Hatibari Government High School, said, “Drinking water was the main issue in our school earlier. However, the problem has been solved due to the 5T initiative. We are now getting pure drinking water,” they said.

Monalisa Behera and Aisa Kujur, students from the Hatibari Government High School

The changeover has also brought smiles on the faces of the school management committee members like Geeta Kujur. “My son and daughter are enrolled in the Deokaranpur high school which is looking far better than how it was earlier. The school now has hygienic washrooms and ample water supply. I am thankful to the Hon’ble CM and the 5T Secretary for extending these facilities to government high schools,” she said.

Collector & DM Sundargarh Nikhil Pavan Kalyan

Meanwhile, Sundargarh Collector Nikhil Pavan Kalyan said the High School Transformation programme of the State Govt under 5T initiative has created new possibilities in shaping the future of the students. “Special emphasis is given on community participation during the implementation of the programme in Sundargarh district. The programme has been successful in the district due to the active participation of all concerned stakeholders,” he said at an event organised during the second phase High School Transformation programme.