Govt rolls out SHRESHTA scheme to provide residential school facilities to SC children

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Srinagar, Jan 23: The Government of India has rolled out a scheme of Residential Education for Students in High School in Targeted Areas (SHRESHTA) to provide educational facilities to Schedule Caste (SC) children.

Under the scheme, the children from SC category will be provided educational facilities from 9th to 12th and the whole expenditure will be borne by the government.

In this regard, the J&K government is chalking out strategies for smooth implementation of the scheme in J&K.

The scheme has been rolled out by the Department of social justice and Empowerment GoI with an aim to provide more opportunities for the meritorious SC boys and girls to study in the "best residential" schools.

In this regard a communication has been issued by the project directorate of Samagra Shiksha J&K to all the Chief Education Officers (CEOs) with the advice to brace up for implementation of the scheme.

As per the communication received from Department of social justice and Empowerment, every year the best CBSE schools with residential facilities would be selected for this scheme and each selected school is expected to provide admission and for at least 10 meritorious SC boys and girls selected through National Entrance Test (NET).

"The entry for students would be in class 9th and 11th for completion of education up to class 12th. The selection of the students would be done through NET for SHRESHTA conducted by National Testing Agency (NTA)," the communication reads.

Under the scheme, every year, around 3000 students would be provided fresh admissions under the scheme and the allocation of schools would be done by web counseling process and the choices will be given to the students and allocating the seats as per merit.

"The cost of education of the students will be borne by the Government by directly transferring the money to the school electronically," the official document reads.

Apart from this, there would be separate grants for conducting bridge courses if needed for the students, the document reads.

In this regard, the NET is expected to hold the entrance for the year 2023-24 in April this year. The Project Directorate Samagra J&K has asked the CEOs to issue instructions to the school heads in their respective districts to give wide publicity to the scheme in their schools and ensure that the SC boys and girls students can be benefited under the scheme.

Meanwhile the School Education Department (SED) has issued instructions to both the directorates to initiate necessary action for implementation of the scheme in J&K.

"The action taken report shall be furnished to the Administrative Department," the communication reads.

The scheme has been launched with an objective to enhance the reach of the development initiative of the government.

"It will fill the gap in service-deprived SC dominant areas in the sector of education by collaborating with voluntary organisations and provide an environment for socio-economic upliftment and overall development of these students," the document reads.

The scheme will provide access to high-quality education to bright SC students "so that they can explore future opportunities."

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