Education Department yet to make 32 KGBV girls schools residential, enrolment declining

Education Department yet to make 32 KGBV girls schools residential, enrolment declining

Exposing the poor state of affairs in the school education department, 32 KGBV girls schools are still functioning as day institutions in violation of the norms set by the government of India for implementation of the scheme.

Over the years, the successive regimes in J&K state havefailed to make 32 out of 97 KGBV schools as residential educationalinstitutions.

In wake of the government's failure, the student enrolmentin the institutions has witnessed a dwindling trend, throwing up a majorchallenge for the government.

In this regard a meeting was convened by the state projectdirector Samagra Shiksha, Arun Kumar Manhas, with the KGBV wardens and otherofficials of the education department to discuss issues hampering theimplementation of the scheme in J&K.

The Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidhyalaya (KGBV) scheme waslaunched 14 years ago by the GoI to provide educational facilities inresidential schools for girls belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes,Other Backward Classes, minority communities and families below the povertyline in educationally backward blocks (EBB).

According to officials, the MHRD has approved 99 buildingsfor KGBV residential schools out of which two schools (in Leh and Kishtwardistricts) are yet to be made operational by the state.

Out of the 97 KGBV schools, 32 are yet to be maderesidential schools due to the laxity of the government in providing properaccommodation for the students enrolled in these schools at various locationsacross the state.

"Other KGBV schools which have been made residential areoperating from rented buildings as government has failed to construct permanentcampus for these schools," an official said.

In the meeting the department discussed the grave issue ofdecline in the enrolment in these schools and non-utilisation of funds releasedto facilitate the children at school level.

"The enrolment is decreasing as the government has failed tomake all the schools residential while as most of these are functioning fromrented accommodations. These are basic issues for decreasing enrolment in thesefemale residential schools," an official said who was part of the meeting.

He also attributed the non-utilisation of the funds to thegovernment's failure to make all schools residential. "We get funds from MHRDto provide bedding and other logistic support to the students but 32 KGBVs areworking as day schools due to which the funds remain unspent," the officialsaid.

Already reported by Greater Kashmir, around 37 percent seatsfor girl students are vacant in KGBVs.

The official said around 40 KGBV buildings have been leftabandoned by the department as construction work on these buildings was haltedmid-way by the concerned executing agency.

As per the official figures, 64 out of 99 KGBVs arefunctioning in Kashmir including Leh and Kargil with an enrollment of 3168students. 35 residential schools are functioning in Jammu. Most of theseschools are operating from rented accommodations.

"At some places the construction of KGBV residential schoolbuildings has been completed but the shifting of schools has been delayedbecause the buildings are without boundary walls and other facilities," theofficial said.

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