SHOWING THE WAY: Mallesh D Harivan gives his students a lesson in plant life during a class in Gadag recently
Photo Source: Times Of India
When Mallesh D Harivan, a teacher, joined the Government Lower Primary School in Adavisomapur, a remote tribal hamlet in Gadag, in 2003, there were only 68 students on the rolls. The school — a Class 1 to Class 5 institution — consisted of just two classrooms and Harivan was determined to increase the number of students on roll as well as to improve the facilities in the school.
Harivan had spent five years teaching in Savanur before moving to Adavisomapur and that experience came in handy. Now, the school has 103 students on its rolls and Harivan had added three more classrooms. The government has recognized his efforts and will confer the best teacher award on him at a ceremony in Bengaluru on Wednesday.
“In this tanda (hamlet), parents of students migrate to other places in search of jobs,” Harivan, 49, told TOI. “Their children would accompany them. With the help of other teachers, I began visiting each house in the tanda to persuade parents to send their wards to school. The response was slow, but steady.”
With the numbers increasing, Harivan decided to expand. He collected Rs 3.5 lakh in donations from friends and acquaintances and built three classrooms. To promote extra-curricular activity, he started a ‘no-bag day’ on every Saturday. Every two weeks, students are taken to the library to encourage them to read.
“Now that I’m in-charge of this school, I will also teach Kannada in very unique way,” Harivan said.
Shankar Hugar, senior lecturer, District Institute of Education and Training, Gadag, said, “Thanks to Harivan’s hard work, many dropouts have re-joined school. Together with government funds, he also collected donations people around to help poor students get notebooks and shoes. He has brought innovative teaching methods to this small school.”
He pays for classroom activities
For the past 13 years, CS Sathish, a teacher at Government Lower Primary School, Mullur, Kodagu, sets aside a portion of his salary every month for what he calls “classroom activities”. He believes his students will learn what they are taught far more quickly through this initiative. He has created a number of science modules on solar energy for example. Recipient of the district-level best teacher award last year, Satish’s teaching career began in Bagalkot. “I teach all subjects,” he said. “Every month, I save some money for classroom activities. I believe in using creative modules to help students learn whatever I teach quickly.”
Awards for teachers
The state government will present 20 primary school, 10 high school and a special high school teacher with Best Teacher awards for the year 2018-19 during Teachers’ Day celebrations at the Banquet Hall, Vidhana Soudha in Bengaluru on Wednesday. Chief minister HD Kumaraswamy will present the awards.