Once a model for the world, today Hyderabad's oldest blind school is starved for attention
The Government Boys High School for the Blind (GBHSB) in Hyderabad is the city's oldest. Started in the late 30s by the Nizam, it had inspired some foreign countries to adopt the same model. Now it stands totally neglected.
The school has been given Grade -1 status in terms of the payment to teachers, yet it has little to offer blind children. Located in Darulshifa, near the Salar Jung Museum in the Old City, the enrolment of students has fallen substantially. From around 300 in the 1960s and 1980s, today it is 80.
Old students say that the Education Research Teachers (ERTs), appointed by the state government to spot and enrol blind kids in the government school, are diverting the students to NGOs for money. This is why the government school is losing out on new students.
Also, computer education is being given only to Class 9 and 10 students as the school lacks the necessary systems. This forces the school to rely on donors.