Govt mulls merger of Primary schools with Anganwadi centres

IMPHAL, Dec 30: The State Government, in an attempt to solve the crisis of lack of students at most of the Gov-ernment Primary Schools of the State, is planing to merge/ amalgamate some Primary schools with Anganwadi centres.
On the other hand, according to an official sour- ce, the School Education Department is planning to appoint additional qualified teachers at Government schools, particularly those with large numbers of students, to improve the condi- tion of the said schools and enhance the faith of parents in Government schools.
Speaking to The Sangai Express, the source pointed out that there are plans to construct new Anganwadi centres in the State under the funding of Ministry of Women and Child Development and around 300 of the new Anganwadi centres will be constructed inside the campuses of select Primary schools.
The source pointed out that construction of the said Anganwadi centres inside the campuses of select Primary schools will help alleviate the problem of lack of students at the Government primary schools to a large extent.
The initiative/plan has been agreed in principle.
As soon as the necessary funds are sanctioned and the eligible Primary schools are identified, the plan will be put into action, the source added pointing out that the said 300 schools include those located in the hill districts as well as the valley districts.
Most of the Government Primary schools begin from class I, which is a huge factor for the lack of students in the schools. If the Anganwadi centres at various localities are properly maintained, then the children from the Anganwadi centres can be admitted to the Primary schools eventually. However, lack of effectiveness on the part of Anganwadi centres has been causing difficulties/ inconveniences in promoting students from Anganwadi centres to Primary schools.
The Department is hoping that the establishment of 300 Anganwadi centres inside the select Primary schools will improve the condition of the said schools and improve their chances of survival within a few years, the source added.
Explaining about other steps taken up by he School Education Department for reviving Government schools in the State, the source stated that the Department has laid out plans to amalgamate Primary schools with Upper Primary and Junior High Schools.
The Department is currently sending out the plans to the concerned MLAs of the valley districts to collect their opinion/feedback.
After collecting the necessary feedback, the Government will start taking up the required steps from the coming academic session, the source added.
The source further stated that qualified teachers will be provided to the schools having high chances of improvement from the coming academic session.
Speaking about two important schemes under the HRD Ministry, namely SSA and RMSA, it conveyed that the ministry is monitoring the inconveniences and hurdles faced by various States.
The Ministry might combine the two schemes into a single package, the source added.
Pointing out that such a move will greatly benefit the State as well, the source explained that SSA covers class I to class VIII while RMSA covers class IX and X.
A problem faced by one scheme may be absent in the other and vice versa, the source stated.
Under SSA, numerous Primary schools have been established and the required teachers have been appointed.
Under RMSA, various Junior High Schools have also been upgraded to High Schools, apart from appointment of numerous teachers.
Although these two schemes have benefited the State greatly, there have been cases when a joint scheme could have been more beneficial/fruitful, the source informed adding that if the two schemes are combined together, it will benefit all the students from class I to class X.
The source said that under SSA, there are 11 Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya /KGVB (having a capacity of 100 students) which are exclusively for girls and nine residential schools (100 students capacity/both male and female) in the State, mainly in the less developed blocks.
These schools currently have classes only from VI to VIII and most of the students are from poor families, it added.
Questions about where these students will continue their studies, is a big issue and taking this into account, the Government is planning to include class IX and X facilities at some select schools, the source claimed.

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