Merge education schemes: Centre to state

FARIDKOT: The Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) has asked the state government to merge the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) — two flagship programmes of the Education Department — for the universalisation of elementary and secondary education.

editorial@tribune.com

Tribune News Service

Faridkot, November 18

The Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) has asked the state government to merge the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) — two flagship programmes of the Education Department — for the universalisation of elementary and secondary education.

As these two schemes, with a common agenda, operate though separate state implementation societies with separate bank accounts, separate project offices and project personnel, it leads to a duplication of efforts. Therefore, it has been decided that the administrative structures at various levels created for the SSA and the RMSA in the state would be integrated, wrote Anil Swarup, Secretary, School Education and Literacy, MHRD, to the Secretary, School Education, Punjab, yesterday.

This merger would entail a single state project office managing both schemes at the state level and one single implementation unit at district and sub-district level.

As many as 27,34,979 children are enrolled in 23,932 elementary and high schools across the state with 1,35,814 teachers.

Presently, the District Education Officer (DEO)-Elementary supervises the SSA and the DEO-Secondary manages the RMSA at the district level.

Sources in the department said the merger was proposed as there was non-utilisation of funds. A senior education officer said: “If a state government works sincerely in improving education at primary and elementary levels, it has no need to spend a lot of funds at the secondary level. With the merger, effective implementation of the SSA will save RMSA funds. This saving can be used for betterment of elementary education.”

HRD Ministry writes to school edu secy

“As these two schemes, with a common agenda, operate though separate state implementation societies with separate bank accounts, project offices and project personnel, it leads to a duplication of efforts. It has been decided that the administrative structures at various levels created for Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan would be integrated to achieve production synergies, better coordination and economisation of administrative costs.” — Anil Swarup, secy, school education and literacy, MHRD

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