Sunday, April 14, 2013

Madhya Pradesh misses RTE deadline

Madhya Pradesh misses RTE deadline

Rageshri Ganguly, TNN Mar 31, 2013, 12.30AM IST

BHOPAL: With the state failing to adhere to Supreme Court deadline of March 31 for meeting the Right to Education (RTE) Act parameters, large number of toilets, classes and boundary walls are yet to be constructed. Besides, Madhya Pradesh is among the 13 states that have asked the Union Government to relax the norms as far as minimum qualification goes to ensure speedy compliance with RTE norms.
On January 11, commissioner Rajya Shiksha Kendra (RSK) Rashmi Arun Shami had written to district collectors quoting the writ petition of October 3 of apex court which states that "toilet facilities for boys and girls, drinking water facilities, sufficient classrooms, appointment for teaching and non-teaching staff etc" should completed, latest by February 15.

However, education department sources say that despite repeated reminders to district collectors, construction of toilets and boundary walls remains a sorry state.
Commissioner Shami had also stated that wherever teachers in government primary and high schools are not according to pupil-teacher ratio (PTR) of 1:30 then contract teachers should be employed till the time permanent teachers are appointed.
By government's own admission, as of January 2013, state-wide, there is still a dearth of over 32,000 toilets for girls and boys while boundary wall for 90,000 schools have to be constructed. Interestingly, the letter stated that no libraries have to be constructed in any of the schools anywhere in the state.
In the state capital alone, 43 toilets for boys and 695 kitchen sheds had to be constructed in 1,191 schools.
The state had already missed deadline of providing details of progress of RTE Act implementation in all government schools of the state to National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, which is the monitoring authority.
RTE Act specifies a series of norms and standards for a school. Norms for number of teachers vary according to the level of the school (primary or upper primary) and total student enrollment.
Norms for classrooms require the school to have at least one classroom for every teacher. Sadly, RTE norms regulate provision of facilities but not their usability.

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