U’khand schools to be revamped, Edu dept asked to focus on reducing drop-out rates

U’khand schools to be revamped, Edu dept asked to focus on reducing drop-out rates

Uttarakhand education minister Dhan Singh Rawat on Saturday instructed department officials to revamp the infrastructure of schools in the hill state to convert them into“centers of excellence”

In a meeting with the education department, Rawat instructed officials to review faculty appointments, school infrastructure, playgrounds and equipment, along with washrooms, water facilities, and electricity.

Officials said that in the first phase, roughly 1,000 schools will be identified and revamped before the start of the new session.

“These will become ‘centres of excellence’. Everything, from the infrastructure, teachers, and extra-curricular activities, would
be improved. Plans are being drawn for the same,” said Mukul Kumar Sati, chief education officer.

The minister also instructed officials to look for substitutes for teachers on childcare leave. Rawat had earlier said that efforts were underway to fill teaching vacancies within a month.

Meanwhile, Sati said that while the primary school drop-out rate in the state is very low (0.9%), the secondary school drop-out rate is slightly high (8%) and efforts are underway to reduce it.

The state currently has 4.3 lakh registered students across 2,514 operational schools, including 1,296 government schools, 1,044 private ones, and 18 Kendriya Vidyalayas, among others. There are also more than 2,200 anganwadis in the state.

The department had earlier this month requested for additional funds to bridge infrastructural gaps, cover vocational trainings in all schools, introduce smart classes, depute English and computer teachers, develop residential hostels, and provide smart TVs for learning, among other requirements. An appraisal for the same will happen soon, said officials.