Tanay Sukumar, August 11, 2010
A whole class of fourth-grade students remained absent from school this Tuesday, despite it being a working day. It has come to light that the kids, around nine years old, had planned to organise a “mass bunk” on the day, so that they could have some outing.
All 39 students – 18 girls and 21 boys – of class IV-K of St. Jude’s Primary School were part of the mass bunk.
Teachers described feeling as if they had been “slapped hard” with such an event. Mass bunks are a common practice in colleges, but unusual in primary school.
Kids of the class, according to reports, had planned the mass bunk last week. Parents and teachers were unaware of the plan.
We caught up with a student, who told us the story on condition of anonymity, lest his classmates get angry, “Class monitor once told some of us. He said about mass bunks in college and high school. We liked the idea. We said we will also do.”
According to the child, the students wondered whether they could also do mass bunks. Soon after, most students understood what was to be done. Some children, called nerds by some classmates for unknown reasons, also succumbed to the pressure and promised they wouldn’t tell their parents. One boy, known as Tom, said he would get the money from his parents for the picnic.
During the bunk, the kids picnicked at the zoo, played rugby, danced, entertained themselves by doing rampwalks, mimicries, and cracked jokes they describe as “non-vegetarian/carnivorous”. Some nerds, however, played games like chidiya udi, while constantly cribbing that what they were doing was wrong, the student said.
The news broke out when guards at a multiplex stopped the bunch of little kids from entering the hall to watch a U/A-rated movie at around 11 am. The children were questioned and the school principal called.
A student, who uploaded photos of the bunk on Facebook, has been asked to delete his account. Parents have been called for a meeting, where they will be invited to keep quiet and listen to counselling lectures. There are now reports of government school teachers asking their students to go for mass bunks.