New syllabus would help students clear competitive exams: Minister

Sengottaiyan addressing the media after releasing new textbooks. He is accompanied by Tamilnadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation chairperson B Valarmathi.

Chennai: Tamilnadu School Education Minister K A Sengottaiyan launched new textbooks for classes 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10 and 12 at the Secretariat.

Speaking after distributing the new textbooks to students, the Minister said, “With the revamped syllabus, students would be able to clear any competitive examination conducted by the Central government, including NEET.”

He stated that the curriculum has been revised considering the welfare of the students.

The new textbooks will be distributed to 77,48,000 students studying in Tamilnadu government and government-aided schools.

Schools run by the government, functioning across the State, reopened today amid a water crisis and searing heat condititions owing to the summer season.

The reason given by department for sticking to the schedule is that they had declared vacation early and postponing reopening would not help teachers complete the syllabus. However, several private schools in the city are reopening 6 June.

But, holidays for institutions in Puducherry have been exteded till 10 June owing to the prevailing heat.

Earlier last week, Sengottaiyan refuted news that appeared in a section of the media that the reopening of schools would be postponed due to summer heat.

There are around 35,414 primary schools, 9,708 middle schools, 17,000 higher secondary schools functioning under the government. The public exams for classes 10, plus-one and plus-two were conducted in March. In view of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, vacation for schools began 10 days early.

Following the annual exams in April, government and private institutions had closed for summer vacation.

The parents had raised concerns over rising mercury levels and water scarcity and had hoped that the reopening date would be postponed.

Owing to monsoon failure, the entire State has been reeling under drought and there was speculation that the academic year would begin late. However, since holidays were declared early, the department officially made an announcement which comes as a clarification to the confusion and rumours claiming extension of holidays.

The State School Education Department had sent a circular ordering the district-level officers to distribute textbooks, stationery items and other freebies before 30 May and to submit a compliance report 31 May.

Additionally, the district-level officials had been told to work with schools from 24-30 May for collecting the free textbooks, notebooks and other materials and prepare them for distribution.

(Video taken by B Anand at reopening of Government Girls Higher Secondary School, Ashok Nagar.)

Bhavani Prabhakar