State level and district level competitions held for primary and secondary school children show a picture of tough competition between students in different fields. The number of prizes bagged by students of government schools and those by private schools is very challenging. Balotsav - a great event for the last 22 years by kothagudem cultural club conducting such interschool events inspired the team of Kriya to organise such district level competitions for children in a variety of fields. Kriya is a non-government, non-profit organisation working in the field of school education in Andhra Pradesh. It provides free coaching centres for polytechnic entrance and provides scholarships for needy students to continue their education. 

Since 2007, Kriya has done 156 school level children festivals. After all these years of experience the team decided to go for a grand District level Children festival, where schools from all over the district would participate in various academic and cultural competitions under one roof and so conducted district level competitions from 2013 to 2015. With over 25 events for students to compete, the response was immense with the participation of about 1500 students participating from throughout East Godavari District.

The sea of talent of primary as well as secondary students made the organisation Kriya to conduct this event on a wider scale and it conducted state level competitions on 23rd and 24th January 2016 in JNTUK campus in Kakinada. 

The  state level event on 23rd and 24th January 2016 held by kriya contained total of 23 events some of which are Story telling, Poem recitation, Fancy dress, Solo dance and Song (only traditional), Folk dance, Playlets, Yoga, map pointing, Telugu speaking, Story analysis, Debate, Elocutions, Clay modelling, Spell bee, Numismatics and Philately, Story writing (Telugu), Science projects etc. The students were divided into 3 categories as sub juniors (class 1 to class 5), juniors (class 6 and class 7), seniors (class 8 to class 10). Each event had total 5 prizes- first, second, third and two consolation prizes.

-In 2013 in Kriya district level competitions out of 80 prizes covering 20 events 48 prizes were taken away by government school children that is 60 % of prizes were in the government school children hands.
-In 2014 district level competitions out of 125 prizes covering 25 events 50% of prizes were bagged by government school children and the remaining by private school children.
-In 2015 district level competitions out of 125 prizes covering 25 events 51% of prizes were taken by government school children.
-In 2016 State level competition out of 115 prizes covering 23 events 50 % of prizes were taken by government school children.  

The 2016 state level competition showed a more intense competition between children, in most of the events the first three places had at least one government school child in the list. They competed equally in creative fields as well as activity based fields. The science projects displayed by these government school children were really appreciable-the display was excellent with very less amount of money spent on making it.

The distinction between government and private schools is no longer as straightforward as it once was. Various factors make it a point to think over again. Government schools serve the majority of children in our country. The spirit showed by these children in such competitions in about a wide range of activities shows a clear picture of the ability of government schools. Government of India’s programmes like Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) is definitely heading towards a positive development of children in the age group of six years to fourteen years. 

The strong points that a government school has is a more qualified teaching staff as compared to that of private schools, less school hours, more concentration on core subjects such as maths, science, social. As the medium of instruction is local language the student gets grip on the local language also whereas on the other hand  private school child has grip over English language but lacks deeper understanding of core subjects as his counterpart in government school. The government school children develop on their own with support from their teacher. As Government school working hours are less the children spend more time in playing outside –this leads to their physical as well as mental development.

Every child has a spark of their own -the way the school nurtures the child brings out the best from the child. And in this regard our Government schools are definitely giving fruits by the complete development of  a student the result of which is shown in different district and state level competitions .Many of the famous personalities in our country have studied in these government schools and moved ahead to serve this country and make country proud of them .One such great personality is The Missile man of India-our Ex-President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam whose birth anniversary  on October 15 was declared by United nations as ‘world students day’ .

Cheers to the Government, Government schools and students.

By K. Lavanya