BHUBANESWAR: THE School and Mass Education department on Monday clarified that elementary and secondary schools having enrollment less than or equal to 15 in Scheduled and KBK areas and those having less than 20 students in other areas will be merged with schools nearby, irrespective of distance.
The government notification issued earlier in March had stated that schools having enrollment of 20 or less would be consolidated with nearby schools in Scheduled, KBK and other areas. With poor enrollment being a major concern, the School and Mass Education department had earlier identified around 14,000 schools having enrollment of 20 or less for their merger with nearby schools in the State.
It had initiated process for closure of around 7,700 elementary and secondary schools in the first phase of which around, 900 schools have already been shut.The government move, however, has drawn strong protest from parents association members as well as Opposition political parties who have been claiming that it would cause inconvenience to students as they would require to travel more distance to reach their schools.
Teachers oppose proposed grant-in-aid amendments
Bhubaneswar: teachers and lecturers of various non-government schools and colleges in Odisha have opposed the State government plan to amend grant-in-aid policy. Sources in the Higher Education department said that it has decided to amend the Odisha (Non-Government Colleges, Junior Colleges and Higher Secondary Schools) Grant-in-Aid Order 2008; Odisha (Non-Government Upashastri and Shastri Colleges) Grant-in-Aid Order 2009; and Odisha (Non-Government Colleges, Junior Colleges and Higher Secondary Schools) Grant-in-Aid in the shape of block grant order 2014. The teachers and lecturers said that amendments to any of the sections or clauses of the orders without consulting them will be unacceptable. “We have demanded that whatever changes being made to the existing orders be initiated only after taking views and suggestions from the teachers community,” said School and College Lecturers’ and Employees’ Association leader Golak Nayak. If 7C clause of the grant-in-aid order is withdrawn, teachers will not be able to raise their voice against any anomaly in pay slabs, Nayak said. Officials of School and Mass Education and Higher Education departments could not be reached for comments.