BHUBANESWAR: A national review mission team has appreciated innovative interventions by the School and Mass Education Department at primary level.
The team, comprising representatives from the Supreme Court, Centre, UNICEF and Dr PM Institute of Advanced Study in Education apart from Commissioner for mid-day meal (MDM) scheme and senior officers of the State Government, visited different places in Balangir, Kalahandi and Puri districts from January 16 to 21 for a joint review of implementation of the MDM programme.
The team appreciated the grievance redressal mechanism and monitoring system __ ‘Samikshya’ __ and kitchen gardens of schools. The student helpline number is also very popular and has a positive impact on the MDM scheme. The concept of idea box in each school in which each student, teacher and other stakeholders make suggestions for improving implementation of school education schemes was also lauded by the team. While appreciating the quality of rice supplied to the schools under the supplementary nutrition programme, the national review mission team also praised the e-transfer of MDM funds to all the schools. This was reported to the State-level steering-cum-monitoring committee meeting on MDM held under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary BK Patnaik here recently.
MDM: The Chief Secretary directed all the district collectors to make monthly review of the implementation of MDM and send a report to State project monitoring unit by 7th of the succeeding month. Under the MDM programme, 54,43,406 students of 70,670 educational institutions are covered. While 38,43,406 students in 50,514 schools are at elementary level, the remaining 16 lakh students of 20,156 institutions belong to upper primary level. Target has been set to construct 69,152 kitchen-cum-stores in schools.
The meeting emphasised proper implementation of school health programme with provisions for iron and folic acid (IFA) supplements, de-worming and providing spectacles to students having refractive errors in coordination with programmes of the NRHM.
It was also decided that the cooking cost of MDM will be directly credited to accounts of individual schools. The committee also resolved to provide adequate number of cook-cum-helpers as per guidelines and credit remuneration directly to their accounts.