- NET Web Desk
Arunachal Pradesh Government on October 9, 2021, signed MoUs with NGOs to run three Ekalavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) in the state- one each at Nyapin in Kurung Kumey district, Khela in Tirap, and Tirbin in Leparada district. These three new schools would start functioning from the next academic session.
The MoUs were signed in presence of Arunachal Chief Minister Pema Khandu, in between the Arunachal Pradesh Ekalvya Model Residential School Society (APEMRSS) and three NGOs – Gyamar Art & Cultural Society to run the Nyapin school, Arunachal Shiksha Vikas Samiti to run the Khela school, and VKV Arunachal Trust to run the EMRS at Tirbin.
Appreciating the NGOs for coming forward to run the schools, Khandu said, “It is tough to run residential schools, especially for the government, therefore it is much appreciated that experienced NGOs volunteer to run such schools to provide quality education to rural children.”
“The EMRS model has been a successful one across the country in areas populated by tribals but regretted that in all these years Arunachal Pradesh could establish only two such schools – one at Bana in East Kameng, which is run by VKV Trust, and the other at Lumla in Tawang run by Art of Living,” Khandu added.
“We are late but not too late to avail the benefits of the scheme. With the three schools beginning from this session, we will have five EMRS running. Five more are coming up in few more districts, which are in different stages of establishment,” the CM further said.
Khandu further informed that two EMRS – one at Medo in Lohit and the other at Dambuk in Lower Dibang Valley – are under construction and will be ready by March 2022, while the process for land identification and acquisition is on for the establishment of EMRS at Aalo (West Siang), Seppa (East Kameng) and Itanagar (Papum Pare).
Union Ministry of Tribal Affairs has provided 100 per cent fund for the establishment of EMRS.
As per the new pattern of funding, Rs 24 crore will be released for the construction of each EMRS.
However, suitable and sufficient land (15 acres minimum) will have to be provided by the state government free of cost.
Underlining the importance of quality in education, the Chief Minister reiterated his concern for the poor quality of education in govt-run schools.
“Government school teachers are highly paid compared to those teaching in NGO-run schools, but the difference between the quality of education is stark. We are producing certificate holders, but not people with real knowledge,” Khandu opined.
He urged the education department to focus on restructuring the functioning of government schools.
The CM also suggested that wherever possible and feasible, old or defunct government schools need to be aligned with schemes like EMRS and should be handed over to reputed NGOs.
The MoU signing ceremony was also attended by Minister SJETA Alo Libang, Advisor SJETA Dasanglu Pul, Education Commissioner, Special Secretary SJETA, officials, and NGO representatives.