The Tibetan school at Miao, Arunachal Pradesh, serves around 300 students. Until recently it was administered by the Central Tibetan Schools Administration (CTSA) – an autonomous body under the central Indian Government. Following a policy decision to hand all Tibetan schools under CTSA to the Tibetan Government in Exile, this school was handed over to the Sambhota Tibetan Schools Society (STSS) fairly recently.
An STSS team recently completed an inspection and evaluative tour of the school. They identified crucial areas of school infrastructure that need repairs and renovations in order to improve the safety of the facility. The findings of the STSS team is corroborated by the report of former TCEF Project Manager, Valerie Hellermann who lead a group there in October 2016.
Urgent Repairs and Renovations Needed
The school was built more than 3 decades ago and since then almost no repairs and renovations have been undertaken. STSS reports that the classrooms and staff quarters are really in a dire state of repairs. Many of the window panes are broken, cracks have developed in many walls, the floors have huge pot holes, the plaster on the walls is cracking and peeling of at many places and the entire complex badly needs a fresh coat of paints.
The kitchen where the mid day meal for the children is prepared also needs major repairs and renovations. Currently it is dark and the room gets filled with smoke. The plan to renovate the kitchen involves the utilization of an adjacent space, initially built as a washroom, but unused since 2012, to expand and rebuild the kitchen. The objective is to build a relatively ‘modern’ kitchen with a fully functional and an efficient chimney which will ensure proper and safe ventilation. Plans also include the construction of much larger windows so that the new kitchen is airy and well lit.
Current toilet facilities are inadequate and not in good condition. Enough toilets needs to be added to appropriately serve 300 students. The toilets need functioning plumbing and adequate hand washing facilities.
The dangerous physical condition of the school is exemplified by huge pot holes in the school corridors. The functionality of the school and the basic safety of its students require speedy renovation of key infrastructure. TCEF in partnership with Sambhota Tibetan Schools Society, Dharamsala and with the generous funding from the Good Works Institute, Idaho is undertaking the needed repair and renovation project for this school.