BHUBANESWAR: Even as thousands of teacher posts are lying vacant and many schools lack infrastructure facilities across Odisha, the State Government on Tuesday launched 100 ‘Adarsh Vidyalayas’ in 14 backward districts raising questions on the effectiveness of the grandiose scheme.
The Adarsh Vidyalayas, which materialised after much wrangling between the Centre and the State during the last two years over funding, have several teething problems that have been glossed over by the authorities before their launch.
As construction of hostel buildings is yet to be started, students will be taken in as day scholars. But, no arrangements have been made to transport students from the interior pockets to the block headquarters where the schools are located.
Official sources, however, maintained that this is a temporary measure and residential facilities will be provided after completion of construction of hostels. Besides, the Adarsh Vidyalayas will create two different types of schools in rural areas. While one set of schools will have all infrastructural facilities, the others will not even have proper buildings.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched the school at Hinjilikatu, his constituency and opened the others online. The Vidyalayas at other places will be launched for two days by ministers, MPs, MLAs and elected representatives.
Initially, students were admitted to Class VI, VII and VIII simultaneously. Gradually, students will be admitted to higher classes. The Students were selected through an entrance examination conducted online by the Odisha Adarsh Vidyalaya Sangathan on February 23, 2016. Students recognised by the School and Mass Education Department appeared at the entrance examination for which no fee was taken.
The medium of instruction will be English and the Vidyalayas will be affiliated to the CBSE. Though it was decided originally that each school will have 26 teachers including the principal, the teachers’ strength has been brought down to 12. But only 10 teachers will be posted in each school for now. At many places including Bolangir block, the principal of the school is yet to join.
So far, 905 teachers out of the sanctioned 1322 posts have been posted in the Vidyalayas. Sources said special emphasis will be given on teaching Science, Mathematics and English.
Besides, the schools will have provision for teaching art. The schools aim at providing holistic and integral teaching to the students.
There is 50 per cent reservation for girls in a Class which will have 40 students with two sections. The reservation of seats for students will be as per the percentage of SC and ST population in the respective blocks.
The cost of construction of 100 schools has been estimated at `302 crore. A provision of `480 crore has been made in 2016-17 for running schools and construction of new school buildings. The State has, however, 8130 high schools with a vacancy of 22,000 post teachers including 1800 headmasters.