The Telegraph
Saturday , January 4 , 2014
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State’s ready-made plan for schools

Ranchi, Jan. 3: The state administration has decided to do away with the conventional method of construction at government primary and middle schools across Jharkhand, and promote pre-fabricated structures.

The objective is to free teachers from all such non-teaching activities so that they can dedicate more attention and time to educating children.

The decision was taken during a meeting of the 34th Working Committee of Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) at Project Building today.

“We should use pre-fabricated structures and stop civil construction at schools in remote areas,” a government official quoted chief secretary R.S. Sharma as saying after the meeting.

Sources said currently, teachers in government schools had to take care of lot things, including construction work.

Additional chief secretary Sudhir Prasad, finance secretary A.P. Singh, HRD secretary K. Vidyasagar and state project director, Jharkhand Education Project Council (JEPC), Mamata were also present during the meeting.

In a separate meeting of the HRD department, chief secretary Sharma proposed use of smokeless stoves at primary schools for cooking midday meals.

He directed the department officials to ensure that wood/coal-based chulhas were soon replaced by smokeless ones to maintain cleanliness.

Also, the chief secretary asked JEPC officials engaged in the midday meal scheme to chalk out a plan for proper monitoring of raw materials.

“The department should send raw materials to schools directly. Deputy commissioners should work out a mechanism in this regard, identify challenges at the ground level,” said Sharma during the meeting.

Further, the chief secretary also focused on distribution of study materials at government schools.

“This year, we did not want to float any tenders for printing textbooks because it takes a lot of time. So, there was a plan to procure books directly from NCERT. However, the rates are higher than our estimated budget of Rs 250 per child for a set of books,” said an official.

The senior government officials also discussed modalities to increase honourarium of parateachers. There is a proposal to raise their salary by Rs 5,000.