BANGALORE: Primary and Secondary Education Minister Kimmane Rathnakar on Tuesday said that the state government will formulate stringent rules for private players while opening schools in the state. Replying to the debate on the demands of his department in the Council, the minister said that applications seeking permission to open private schools were coming from those who are critical of the state government in general and the Education Department in particular.
He said it was necessary to frame strict rules for such schools to be opened. “Come what may, I will do it in the coming days and implement it,” he said.
In a three-hour marathon reply, the minister said as many as 1.14 crore children are studying between class 1 and II PUC and more than three lakh were working in the Education Department of the total 5.6 lakh government employees. Of `17,500 crore allocated to his department, around `11,000 crore is kept aside to pay salaries to the three lakh employees and little money was being spent on improving the quality of education.
The state is home to 50,000 government schools which are striving hard to give good education, he said. He said `400 crore was spent on the government’s Ksheera Bhagya scheme and `1,500 crore on the mid-day meal scheme. Besides, crores of rupees was spent on distributing text books, uniforms and cycles to students, he said.
He admitted that several school buildings across the state were in depilated condition. Kimmane said `6,000 crore was required to repair such schools and it was not possible now due to financial constraints.However, he said that talks were on with philanthropists and reputed companies to take up repair works and maintain government schools.
Most of the primary schools do not have permanent head masters and are managed by in-charge head masters. This year, the government promoted 9,000 senior teachers as head masters and posted them to many primary schools. A proposal has been sent to the Finance Department to release `10 lakh for 2,000 schools which have completed over 100 years.
Defending the government’s decision to conduct state-level Teachers’ Eligibility Test, the minister said this was mandatory as per the All India Education Policy. The purpose of this test is to keep update the teachers about the present syllabus, he said.
Biometric System in schools?
Kimmane Rathnakar said he wants to introduce biometric system in all 50,000 schools. But the cost of implementing it is worrying, he said. However, efforts will be made to have this system in all schools in a phased manner, he said. On admissions under the Right to Education (RTE), the minister said more than 20,000 seats are vacant. In some districts, students who got admissions in reputed schools studied for one year and again returned to government schools, he said. Kimmane said a fresh proposal has been submitted to the government to recruit an additional 3,000 teachers exclusively for the Hyderabad-Karnataka region.