Government school students say they do not have adequate sports equipment and PE teachers in school.
Government schools in the city lack sports facilities and faculty said school authorities. The Samagra Siksha Scheme states that every government school will receive grants of Rs.5,000 for Primary Schools, Rs. 10,000 for upper primary schools and up to Rs. 25,000 for secondary and senior secondary to invest in sports equipment and infrastructure.
However, the principal of the Government Primary school in Devagere said that they receive no funds for buying sports equipment and providing sports facilities for children in the school.
She added that there is no playground in the school, “We just need some funding from the government to provide sports facilities for kids.”
Geetha, the principal of Government High school, K.Gollahalli said, “We have received a sports grant of Rs 25,000 for 2021 with which we have bought equipment and materials like volleyball, chess and shot-put. But for this year we have received no grants.”
She also said, “There is no Physical Education Teacher (PET) in our school since 2020, after the sports teacher took voluntary retirement.” She further said, “No teacher is ready to take up the vacant place as the strength of the school more, it around is 350,”.
Geetha further said, “We want proper teachers and coaches so that the students can have a good future in sports, the students are suffering due to lack of a proper sports teacher,” and added that government policies for the recruitment of teachers take a lot of time.
Kishan V, a student from the same school who studies in the 10th standard said, “We have no PT teacher since three years and have to learn sports by ourselves.”
Another student, Hussain said, “I love to play volleyball, but don’t know the rules to play the game properly and we have to learn it all by ourselves.”
Anita, a teacher from Government Higher Primary School (GHPS), Tagachaguppe said, “We receive no funds from the government for buying sports equipment and there is no playground for the children to play.”
She added, “We also don’t have a Physical Education (PE) teacher in our school, I take the physical education class and teach them with the little knowledge I have about sports.”
Bavitha, a student from GHPS said, “I like to play badminton but there is no space in the school for us to play.”
Sameer Pasha a PE teacher from Government High School, Kumbalgodu said, “The government has not provided us any funds for sports equipment, we collect Rs. 20 from students each year to buy equipment for them.”
“The equipment that we have in school is not adequate for all the students to play,” he added.
S.N Ramesh, the Joint Director of Physical Education from the Department of Public Instructions said, “We conduct sports meet for primary and secondary school at taluk level, district level and state level in government school all over Karnataka and the department has also taken action to appoint PT teacher in schools soon.”
Minister of School Education and Literacy in a tweet mentioned that the department of school education and literacy will recruit 2,200 associate teachers, 200 Physical Education teachers and 100 special teachers to overcome the shortage of teachers at government high schools.
The Deputy Director of the Department of Youth Empowerment and Sports said that the lack of sports facilities is mainly a budgetary issue; the government should provide proper funds to promote sports activities at schools.
He also mentioned that the Department of Youth Empowerment and Sports provides sports equipment to selected government schools each year and provide scholarships to students who excel in sports. Students from Pre University (PU) and above get fee reimbursements.
B Simha Chalam, a retired principal said, “Earlier the government used to provide ample funds to encourage sports at schools but now the expenditure on unnecessary activity is more and they don’t have money to spend on sports and other co-curricular activities.”
“The Head Masters should approach the government to provide funds for sports at schools,” he added.