SSC results: Student from cyclone-hit village tops with 99.4 per cent

Updated: Jul 31, 2020, 07:21 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon | Mumbai

While Siddesh Patil's score is happy news for his family, teachers and the whole district, his school, which was renovated only last year, has still not been repaired due to lack of funds

Siddesh Patil
Siddesh Patil

Raigad's SSC topper is from Goregaon, Mangaon, which was badly hit by Cyclone Nisarga. Siddesh Patil, 16, who fell short of three marks from 500, scored 99.40 per cent, making not only his parents but the district proud.

"This is the first time in the history of the school and the district that student has scored such high marks," said Dilip Shet, chairman of MTES (Mangaon Taluka Education Society), which runs the NM Joshi Vidyalaya. Of the school's 287 students who appeared for SSC exams, 280 passed.

Last year, some of the school's alumni had pitched in for its renovation. It provides education to nearly 5,000 students from about 50 villages in and around Mangaon Tehsil.

"I am happy with the result. Though I was sure about scoring anywhere between 98 and 99 per cent, I was not sure of topping," said Siddesh.

Want to study at IIT Bombay

"The earlier you complete the syllabus, the more time you get to practice and solve mock question papers. Once you are able to solve maximum question papers, you realise that board papers are much easier. I started studying in April 2019 for six to seven hours daily," said Siddesh.

Guardian minister Aditi Tatkare at the NM Joshi Vidyalaya
Guardian minister Aditi Tatkare at the NM Joshi Vidyalaya

With regard to studying English, Siddesh said, "I would clear my doubts from my school teachers and my parents would help too."

Siddesh also likes to play chess and has participated in state-level competitions. He wants to study computer engineering at IIT Bombay.

"I feel sorry that the school had to go through such heavy losses due to the cyclone. I hope students who are in SSC this year get to focus on studies and manage to complete the syllabus at the earliest," Siddesh said.

Cyclone Nisarga also affected the building where Siddesh stays with his parents and younger sister. Siddesh's father, Sanjay Patil, who works as a laboratory technician at Dr BR Ambedkar University, Goregaon. Siddesh's mother Yogita is a school teacher and his sister Snehal is a school student. "We are happy that Siddesh got good percentile. Not not only the school but the entire district is proud of him," Sanjay said.

Schools repairs yet to start

Siddhesh's school and junior college and the Doshi Vakil Science and Commerce College, both run by MTES, were devastated in the cyclone. The school's roof, building, computer lab, physics, chemistry and biology labs, solar panels and auditorium and solar panels got damaged and the losses are estimated to be over a crore.

Damaged benches in a classroom
Damaged benches in a classroom

Shet said, "We have neither started the repairs nor have we got compensation from the government. The education department had announced a payment of R2 lakh but the money is yet to come. We are also thankful for playback and bhajan singer Anuradha Paudwal who visited our school last week and helped us with R2.60 lakh. She also visited other schools in the tehsil and assisted them financially."

"We do not have funds to take up the entire work, hence we have decided to repair the roof first. Gradually we will ask our alumni and good Samaritans to help," Shet said.

Most of the school's students cannot afford mobiles and tablets and as such online classes for SSC and HSC have not started. "Moreover, most of the rural areas are still without power. We hope once the lockdown is over, by September 1 at least, the classes will begin," Shet said.

People must do their bit

Singer Anuradha Paudwal at the school
Singer Anuradha Paudwal at the school

Paudval told mid-day, "The situation is disheartening. They have to incur heavy losses. I have been supporting the schools in and around Goregaon and will continue to reach out to good Samaritans and trusts to help schools. The government is doing whatever it can but people should also do their bit.

Also Read: Maharashtra SSC results: Highest in 15 years, Mumbai scores 97 per cent

Praising Siddesh, Paudwal said, "It is a moment of joy and happiness for the school and Siddesh's parents. There are many talented children in rural areas and we should help them achieve their dreams."

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