Spurned HIV+ student finally gets into school

Collector takes action to undo wrong
A 15-year-old HIV-positive boy, allegedly denied admission to the Government Higher Secondary School at Kolakanatham in Perambalur district, was on Monday enrolled in another school after senior officials intervened. Though the authorities had offered to admit the boy to the school at Kolakanatham, his father decided against it to protect his son’s privacy. The boy and his father, a lorry driver in Kerala, presented a petition to Collector V. Shanta during the grievances day meeting on Monday. Acting swiftly, the Collector held a meeting with Chief Educational Officer K. Arularangan and directed him to take steps to enrol the boy in a school. Subsequently, School Education Department officials and Childline volunteers escorted the boy to the Government Higher Secondary School here and enrolled him in Class X. The boy has also been given admission to a hostel run under the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan. Ever since his mother, also HIV-positive, died a year ago, he has been staying in a temple at Kolakanatham village. In his complaint to the Collector, the boy’s father alleged that he and his son had been undergoing mental agony after the latter was denied admission. The school’s headmaster had also threatened them for raising the issue with the authorities, he added. “After vacillating for more than 10 days, the officials came forward to admit my son to the Kolakanatham school. But I was not ready to admit my son to the school as almost all teachers and students had come to know the HIV status of my son. Hence, I opted for another school. No HIV-positive person should undergo the agony that we are undergoing,” the boy’s father said. As per the findings of a preliminary enquiry, the Chief Educational Officer said that there was a delay in admitting the boy to the Kolakanatham school. The headmaster had apparently insisted on the presence of his father to start the admission process but it was misunderstood by his aunt, who accompanied the boy for the admission, he claimed.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/spurned-hiv-student-finally-gets-into-school/article28666207.ece

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