Gangtok, January 6:
A joint meeting of the Executive Committee and the 6th General Body of the State Mission Authority, SSA, Sikkim was convened at the Banquet hall, Chintan Bhawan, on January 6, 2011 to implement Right To Education properly in the state.
Minister for HRDD, N.K. Pradhan, who is also the Vice President of the State Mission Authority in his address said that Universalisation of Elementary Education has always been the National priority.
With the implementatation of Right to Education (RTE), the education is now free and compulsory upto the age of 14 years. The State of Sikkim is moving ahead in full swing in implementing RTE and the project has also enhanced the advanced structure of learning various subjects with ease, he added. Emhasising on Siksha Ka Haq Abhiyan, he stated that the main motives of launching this programme is to create awareness about the rights, duties and priviledges as per RTE and also expressed his happiness about the awareness and interest amongst the Panchayat members and general public with regard to RTE. Besides, he mentioned that the contribution made so far can be visualized by people from outside.
The Chief Secretary, Karma Gyatso who is also the Chairman, Executive Committee SSA, Sikkim in his address mentioned that education is the most important national activity and is the back-bone of any programme that the country would undertake. Sarva Siksha Abhiyan aims at providing good quality elementary education to all children in the age group of 6-14 years in a mission mode. With the implementation of RTE Act, the responsibilities has increased manifold. The formidable tasks now are retention of students in school, to bring ‘out of school children’ to mainstream schooling system at their age in appropriate classes, to provide to all the schools appropriate learning equipment, play materials and sports equipment, to provide educational needs of differently abled children, to train all teachers teaching at elementary stage by 2015.
Speaking further, he stated that the total number of schools up to elementary stage has become783 with the enrollment of 94053 students. 5 Residential Special Training Centres has been established in the current financial year to cater to the needs of ‘Out of School’ children to bring these to their appropriate classes.
Further more, SSA wing has also conducted door to door household survey to identify Children with special need and appointed 27 Resource Person and 22 Inclusive Education Volunteers and placed at BACs to provide support to them. SSA will adopt ‘Zero Rejection Policy’ so that no child is left out of the education system, he added.
Earlier, the meeting began with the welcome address and brief report on SSA by the Secretary, HRDD, C.S. Rao. Highlighting some of the sectors under education he said that Sarva Siksha Abhiyan(SSA), Mid Day Meal(MDM), Vocational Education(VE), Rashtriya Madyamik Siksha Abhiyan(RMSA), Information Commutation Technology(ICT), Inclusive Education for Disabled at Secondary Stage( IEDSS), Sakshar Bharat/ NLM in North and west District are some of the major programmes under this sector. The objectives of SSA are all children in School, Education Guarantee Centre, alternate School or back to School camp, all children between the age group of 6-14 years of age should complete eight years of elementary schooling. Focus on elementary education of satisfactory quality with emphasis on education for life and bridge all gender and social gap at primary stage and at elementary level and universal retention are also the major agendas of the aviyan.
Informing further on the achievement so far, he mentioned that number of schools have gone up, many fold increase in enrollment, school exists within walking distance of a child, literacy rate has increased from 31.1% in 1981 to 82.2% in 2011 in the State level.
A. Basu Majumdar, Vice Chancellor, North Bengal University also spoke on the occasion.
The State Project Director, SSA Mamta Thapa placed the Resolutions for the approval of the house.
The meeting also included the release of the SSA publications viz. workbook on health and hygiene for classes I and III and Teacher’s Guide on health and hygiene for class I and State Vision Documents on quality education. It was followed by the glimpses of launching of Shiksha Ka Haq Abhiyan in Sikkim.