Govt. to set up temporary schools, continue Vidyagama

This will help keep a significant number of children in school, says Suresh Kumar

The State government will set up temporary schools near brick kilns and continue the Vidyagama scheme till regular schools start all classes, Primary and Secondary Education Minister S. Suresh Kumar said in Khanapur on Monday.

This will help keep a significant number of children in school, he said.

“In some taluks, child labour and child marriages are increasing due to the long period of school lockdown in this academic year. It is unfortunate. One of the ways that we can prevent such things is to start colleges in the off-line mode. We will start all classes once the State government takes a decision based on a report from the Health Department’s monitoring committee. Till then, we will open temporary schools for children of workers and continue the Vidyagama programme,” he said.

He inspected some government schools and held a meeting of officers in the Block Education Officer’s office.

He clarified that regular classes have been opened up for classes 9, 10, 11 and 12 across the State and they are being conducted effectively.

He asked teachers to consider Vidyagama as a serious programme and implement it sincerely. He said that preventing child marriages is a difficult task, but school teachers should work in coordination with other department officers to prevent such evil practices, he said.

To a question, he said that there is no proposal to start mid-day meals in high schools as of now.

He said that the pandemic and the lockdown have derailed several schemes and projects of the department. However, “we will try to implement all development programmes in a sustained manner,” he added.

He said that English-Kannada dual medium schools have received a positive response. This experiment has not changed the State government policy of teaching Kannada as a compulsory subject in all schools, he said.

In the government Marathi-medium school in Jamboti, the Minister sang Jai Bharat Jananiya Tanujate, the State song. He later told journalists that the leadership in Maharashtra should attain maturity and focus on development issues. “They should stop raising old issues and stop diverting people’s attention away from the real ones,” he said.

He said that the State government was committed to promoting Kannada and introduction of Kannada in schools. “I have visited schools in border areas across the State. I will be visiting some border area schools in Kalyan Karnataka too,” he added.

He said that he recognised the handicap suffered by students in remote areas in reaching schools that are far off. Students in forest areas or remote villages without bus connectivity suffer greatly. “We are requesting the KSRTC and other State-run transport undertakings to introduce more buses to such areas. We are also asking them to distribute student passes to a larger number of school-goers. The Education Department will also consider arranging alternative transport facilities to remote areas if buses cannot reach there,” he said.

The government will ensure that no school suffered from shortage of teachers, he said.

Later, the Minister inaugurated the high school building renovated by the Vidya Vikas Samiti in Jamboti village.

RSS leader Mangesh Bhende, Jan Kalyan Trust chairman Arvind Rao Deshpande, VTU Vice-Chancellor Karisiddappa, MLA Anil Benake, Deputy Commissioner M.G. Hiremath and others were present.

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