NELLORE: Attractive wall paintings, furniture, green chalkboards, clean toilets and other infrastructure developments at 38 government schools in Nellore district are grabbing the attention of students and parents alike. These schools have received Swachh Vidyalaya awards, instituted by the Government of India in 2016-17 to “recognise, inspire and celebrate excellence in sanitation and hygiene”.
Out of 4,582 schools in the erstwhile district, 4,310 had vied for the awards in 2021-2022. Officials from the state and district committees inspected the schools and authorised 3,858 of them to enter the contests, and issued 494 schools 5-star, 1,661 4-star and 1,703 schools 3-star ratings.Out of them, eight schools won in ‘overall’ category while 30 in sub-level categories.
Nallagonda Main MPUPS, Ramateertham ZPHS, Venkannapalem MPPS, Karnalamitta MCPS, Dargamitta ZPHS, Musunuruvaripalem ZPHS, AP Model School (Kaligiri) and Kogili MPUPS won in the overall category. Their success was attributed to the development activities taken up under ‘Manabadi Nadu-Nedu’ programme.Parents’ committees, school staff and local officials frequently visited the schools even during the lockdown to ensure the completion of Nadu-Nedu works.
“There were no separate toilets for girls at our school, no water facility at washrooms. This is not the case anymore. We are better in terms of both infrastructure and academics than before. So we hope that student strength may also increase in the current academic year,” said Sunitha, an English teacher at a government school in Nellore district.
The Swachh Vidyalaya campaign was launched to ensure that all schools have access to separate toilets for boys and girls. “The purpose of SVP is to honour schools that have undertaken significant steps towards fulfilling the mandate of Swachh Vidyalaya campaign,” said collector KVN Chakradhar Babu.