JAMMU: In a bid to give fresh boost to the education sector, Jammu and Kashmir government will soon establish "16 new degree colleges" and upgrade "400 schools" in the state, Education Minister Altaf Bukhari said.
The government, said the education minister, wants to fill the accessibility gap in areas where students have to walk dozens of kilometres to attend their classes.
"Government is in the process of announcing 16 new degree colleges for the deserving areas. There are many important tehsils which are still lacking the facility of higher education," Bukhari said at a function here yesterday.
In addition, he said 200 high schools would be upgraded to higher secondary level, while an equal number of middle schools would be upgraded to high school level.
According to the minister, many areas, which also includes the world-renowned tourist destination Pahalgam in Kashmir and the border tehsil of RS Pura in Jammu, deserve degree colleges and that the government has decided to meet such demands.
Though regretting the setback faced by the education sector in past decades due to turmoil in the valley, the minister was all praises for the teaching fraternity, who he said remained committed to the cause of education, even in the times of turbulence.
"Teachers, both in the government and private sector, deserve all praise for their commitment towards their noble profession and the state is indebted to them," he said He added, that the young generation of technocrats and officers serving in the state at present are the very lot taught by the teachers, who worked during the troubled times in the valley.
The minister also advised the private school association to follow the norms, be it about the appointment of teachers, payment of salary and give other incentives to achieve good quality of education.