11 August :Himachal Pradesh had one of the best teacher-pupil ratio in the country and had been registered at 17 while the average classroom size was 18, school size 56 and percentage of girls: all schools 47.27, Government Schools: 49.22. This was revealed by Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal, Chief Minister, in the review meeting of the Education Department held here under his Chairmanship today.
Chief Minister said that the state had best educational infrastructure catering to the quality educational needs of the students. He said that there were over 12.50 lakh enrolment of the students in the vast network of over 15,000 educational institutions in the government sector. He said that the state had a huge manpower of about 50,000 teachers which consisted of 42.23 percent of women teachers in primary and 28.36 percent in upper primary sections. He said that over the years the pass percentage had increased substantially and the drop out rate minimized to just negligible. He said that efforts needed to be done to completely check the drop out rate so that no child was left uneducated or under educated. He said that Hamirpur, Bilaspur, Kinnaur, Lahaul and Spiti districts had registered cent percent enrolment only a few which were severely disabled or mentally challenged were left out and efforts were being made to provide them trainers to educate them at home. He emphasized the need to motivate the parents of the children who were not being sent to the schools for formal education where the local teachers could play pivotal role.
Prof. Dhumal said that the state would be making preparations to implement the RAshtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan to develop senior secondary schools as accessible and affordable to the young people in the age group of 15-16, improve quality of education through making all secondary schools conform to prescribed norms, remove gender, socio-economic and disability barriers so that universal access was achieved by the year 2017 as 75 percent enrolment ratio achieved by 2011-12. He said that the scheme would be on the funding pattern of 75:25 by the centre and state. He said that the scheme aimed at having atleast one good senior secondary school in every development block having innovative curriculum and pedagogy. He said that the earlier schemes of Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan had yielded encouraging results and had been instrumental in strengthening the infrastructure and improve the education quality in the educational institutions. He said that the state government would be developing one government degree college in every district as centre of par excellence so bring about qualitative improvement in the educational system.
Chief Minister said that the state government had introduced a number of scholarships with a view to encourage the outstanding students emerge as source of inspiration to rest of their school fellows. He said that about Rs. 4 crore were spent during preceding financial year over all such scholarship schemes. He said that free text books were being provided to all students upto primary level and upto middle standard to all, other than general category. He said that the state government was committed to start teaching Punjabi and Urdu as optional subjects in the middle schools and the recruitment process of teachers had already been started by the department. He said that educational institutions with cent per cent results needed to be issued appreciation certificates. He said that efforts needed to be made to construct school toilets under the Total Sanitation programme under implementation in the state while water supplies made available under local drinking water supply schemes. He directed the authorities to ensure that regular medical check-up of students was carried.
Prof. Dhumal directed the authorities to start teaching Yoga in consultation with the Patanjli Yog Peeth Haridwar and Art of Living, Banglore, who had promised trained manpower availability to the state till the state had its own arrangements. He said that marshal arts also needed to be taught to the students for self defence purposes and necessary modalities completed in this regard. He said that attendance of teachers in the villages could be transferred to the local panchayats so that teaching was not disturbed. He also emphasized the need for regular inspections of the educational institutions and guard them against any drug abuse in the peri pheries.
Shri I.D.Dhiman, Education Minister said that the last seven months of the present government had remarkable achievements in the education sector and informed that rationalization of the educational institutions was under process.
Smt. Asha Swaroop, Chief Secretary, Shri Bhim Sen, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, Shri Arvind Mehta, Principal Secretary, Finance,Shri P.C.Dhiman, Principal Secretary Education, Dr. O.P.Sharma, Driector of Higher Education, Dr. Sunil Chaudhary, Director, Elementary Education, Shri Vikas Labroo, Project Director, SSA, Shri D.D.Sharma, Additional Driector of Education, Shri Rajesh Sharma, Secretary, HP Board of School education, Shri Udey Singh Negi, Additional Secretary Education, and other senior officers of the department were present in the meeting.