Class 11 offline session: Suman schools record 60 pc attendance

The SMC runs 329 schools, imparting education free of cost to 1.5 lakh students in Gujarati, Marathi, Urdu, Hindi, Telgu, Odiya and English medium from classes 1 to 8.

Suman schools run by the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC), where Class 11 was launched last week, reported 60 per cent attendance in its first offline session on Monday. SMC is the first civic authority in Gujarat to start Class 11 in its municipal schools.

The SMC runs 329 schools, imparting education free of cost to 1.5 lakh students in Gujarati, Marathi, Urdu, Hindi, Telgu, Odiya and English medium from classes 1 to 8.

The SMC also runs 18 Suman schools for Class 9 and 10 with nearly 10,000 students in various mediums. Nearly 4,500 students passed in Class 10 in Suman schools this year.

The SMC recently got permission from the state education department to launch 24 classes for Class 11 Commerce, Arts and Science in Gujarati, Hindi and Marathi mediums.

SMC administrative officer, Dharmesh Patel, said, “We give admissions only to municipal school students. So far we have admitted 1,592 students in Suman schools. Out of 24 classes, 10 classes are of Gujarati medium, 11 in Marathi medium and 3 in Hindi medium. In the majority of the classes, the intake of students is 65, while in some classes we have adjusted 70 students. We have also taken teachers with post-graduation and B.Ed who have passed Teacher Aptitude Test (TAT).”

Zainab Mustufa Gohil (17), a resident of Shantinagar, who scored 90 per cent in Class 10 from Suman school no. 1 at Pandesara in Surat, joined the same school for Class 11 Commerce in Gujarati medium. The school has the name of her mother Fatema Gohil, who was Class 10 topper in the same school in 2000 with 79 per cent marks, listed among its bright students.

Talking to The Indian Express, Zainab said, “My father sells bags made out of torn jeans and my mother is a homemaker after completing her Class 12 in Commerce with 65 per cent marks. She had topped in the school where I was the third topper this year. I was struggling to get admission when my school principal Darshana Parmar informed my mother about SMC’s decision to start Class 11. I want to become a Chartered Accountant and it is my parents’ wish too.”

Harsh Khatri who scored 85 per cent in Class 10 couldn’t have afforded to join Class 11 in a private school. Son of Praveen Khatri, who works in a powerloom factory in Pandesara, Harsh said, “My father has limited income. When I did not get admission anywhere else, I lost hope and thought I will have to work instead of studying. That is when my principal called up my father and told him that the school was starting Class 11. I was enthralled but was worried about the fees. But they have charged only Rs 1,100 for a year. My father also have to educate my two younger siblings. Now I will give tuitions to help my studies. After studies, I will look for a government job.”

Darshana Parmar, principal of Suman school no. 1, said, “In 2020, our Class 10 board result was 78.48 per cent, while it was 80.59 in 2019 and 85.71 in 2018. A majority of the residents near our school are Marathi and Gujarati-speaking people with limited sources of income.”

“In the past three years, we carried out surveys to find out where our students go after Class 10 and submitted the report to SMC. As per the report, 162 out of 396 students who passed Class 10 from 2017 to 2020 joined Class 11 Commerce, while nine went for Science and nine for Arts. Thirteen students joined ITI, seven for Diploma courses, while 66 left studies and 127 students could not be contacted. The survey done in all 18 Suman schools in the city revealed that majority of the students wanted to study Commerce,” added Parmar.

In Suman school 6 Marathi medium, four classes have started for Class 12, out of which three are Commerce stream and one in Arts stream.

Mahendra Bavishkar, principal of the school, said, “It is good that the SMC has started Class 11. In our survey, we have found that from 2018 to 2020 out of 1,344 students who passed Class 10, 65 went to their native place in Maharashtra, while 871 took admission in Class 11 Commerce, followed by 168 in Arts, 122 in ITI, 38 in Diploma courses, 24 in Science in Marathi medium, 38 students in Science in Gujarati medium and 15 in Science in English medium. With SMC schools launching Class 11, the number of students leaving their studies will go down.”

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