In a move that could affect several students studying in railway schools, the Southern Railway has decided to shut down all the nine schools functioning across the five divisions.
A communication to this effect was issued by the Southern Railway on Monday asking all schools to stop fresh intake for the coming academic year.
The principals of the schools have also been instructed to sensitise parents of both railway and non-railway employee’s children to shift their wards to other schools for the next academic year 2019-20. Southern Railway has also assured teachers in these schools that they would be redeployed in the respective divisions.
In Trichy, the railway school at Golden Rock has a total strength of 327 students up to Class X. While the decision will affect all, the most affected will be those in Class IX as most schools do not admit new students to Class X.
Though the school principal was unaware of such a communication, an insider from the Golden Rock railway workshop (GOC) under which the school is functioning, said that the schools were turning out to be a burden on the railways and it was a conscious decision which has already been implemented in a few other railway zones in the country. In Trichy, the Tamil medium school under GOC was closed down a couple of years ago and converted into a Kendriya Vidyalaya school.
“The railways introduced educational allowance for employees who send their wards to non-railway schools. This move saw a steady decline of students admitted in railway schools. Southern Railway also increased the fee for non-railway employee’s children manifold in the past years. These factors resulted in the student strength coming down to 327 from over a 1,000 a decade ago,” an official said.
He also added that the decision to close down these schools is a policy decision of the Southern Railway.