GUWAHATI: The Assam government will introduce co-ed system across the state-run schools.
The idea is to promote gender equality and ensure girls find a school at their doorsteps. “From now on, there won’t be any boys or girls-specific government schools in Assam. They will have both boys and girls. We are doing this to promote gender equality,” Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Friday.
He left it to the wisdom of some heritage girls’ schools to join or not to join this system.
“If these heritage girls’ schools want to continue in the present form, we will allow them to do so. Otherwise, all other schools will be converted to co-ed schools,” Sarma said.
He highlighted the hardship being faced by girl students in Guwahati due to the lack of co-ed schools. “As girls do not get admission in the boys’ schools in Guwahati, a lot of them are forced to travel a long distance to pursue education from a girls’ school. There are only a few girls’ schools here although more than 50% of the candidates in the class X board examination are girls,” the CM said.
He said the government was more interested in implementing the co-ed system in the boys’ schools. The government wants to admit the girls in the boys’ schools, which are aplenty, so the girls get a school at their doorsteps, he said.
The state government also decided to introduce dual medium of instruction (English and vernacular) for classes 6-12 in the state-run schools.
Sarma was confident this would increase enrollment in the state-run schools which have more teachers but less numbers of students.
“We experimented with English medium in one school. We got a good response from parents. So, to begin with, we want to have 10 such schools in every district. They will have both English and Assamese as mediums,” the CM said.
Another decision of the government is to have mathematics and science classes in English from Class 3 in all state-run schools. The government will also abolish the subject social studies and introduce history and geography.