Odisha schools go hunting for TV as CM is set to make his first televised address

first_imgThe first television address by Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday to mark Children’s Day has left headmasters and school authorities a worried lot in the State. They are finding it difficult to arrange television sets for the day.The School and Mass Education Department is expecting students to be present in schools to watch the live telecast of the Chief Minister’s speech between 11 a.m. and 12 noon. Mr. Patnaik will address the State-level Children’s Day celebration at Capital High School here on Tuesday.“All students of schools will attend the CM’s programme on November 14 in the nearby village where television with set-top box connection facilities is available. The headmasters and school management committee members will contact villagers and parents having television with set-top box connection facilities to watch the programme on that day,” said P. K. Mohapatra, School and Mass Education Secretary, in his instruction.But there are not adequate television sets to watch the CM’s address in more than 65,000 primary, upper primary and high schools across the State. Headmasters and school authorities have already started a hunt for television sets so that the CM’s first televised address to children does not go unwatched.While some schools already have TVs, many are trying to convert computer desktops and projectors provided under the smart class initiatives into televisions with the help of hardware. Getting a TV on rent is also difficult in the interior pockets.When asked many headmasters, who did not want to be named, said it was difficult to arrange a television set for a day. “We have already persuaded parents to either lend their television sets for the day or make arrangement in their premise to watch the CM’s programme. But nobody is forthcoming,” said a headmaster in Balangir district.‘No compulsion’Although higher-ups in the education department clarified there was no compulsion for teachers to arrange television sets for the proposed televised address by the CM, which is dubbed as an imitation of Prime Minister’s Narendra Modi’s addresses, the veiled message is clear -– teachers and students will have to remain present in front of television sets on Tuesday.District Education Officer (DEOs) and Cluster Resource Coordinators (CRC) have already delivered ‘verbal communications’ to school authorities to make arrangements. School authorities in some districts have also been asked to send photographic evidence of children-parents sitting together at the function to the higher authorities.“We have instructed all schools to watch the CM’s address on Children’s Day. In primary schools where TVs are not available, they can come to the gram panchayat headquarters for watching the programme. Alternatively, arrangement should be made to watch the programme in village community halls,” said Brundaban Satpathy, DEO of Khordha.Apart from the problem of arranging televisions, teachers had been informed by many parents that they were not interested in sending their wards to school as children want to enjoy the holiday at home.last_img

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