Friday, January 27, 2023

Appeal to continue old PMS format

Heads of two schools in Dimapur and Niuland districts have expressed concern over the abrupt decision of the Centre to discontinue pre-matric scholarship to grade I to X and instead provide scholarship only to grade IX and X students from the minority communities from 2022-23 academic session.
In a letter to principal director Department of School Education (DoSE), Headmaster KHS Toshi Jamir said the department’s November 30, 2022 notification to discontinue scholarship to students of grade I to 8 was a big blow as the students had already spent a good amount of money to fill up the application by submitting (income certificate, PRC, community certificate, birth certificate, passport photos, Aadhaar photo copy, café charges, etc.) as mentioned in the July 25 notification of the department.
Therefore, the principal said that the DoSE should inform the affected students through mass media about the abrupt decision of the Central Government and not only leave the matter in the hand of the Institute Nodal Officers (INOs). He said that though education was free for government schools, it was not so for students studying in the private school.
In another statement, chairman cum Head Teacher Holy Wood School, Nihoto, Niuland K. Innoka Awomi said the Pre-Matric scholarship scheme for meritorious students from minority communities had benefited students, who secured at least 50% marks in the previous final examination; and annual income of their parents/guardian from all sources not exceeding Rs. 1 Iakh. However, the scheme has now been discontinued with immediate effect (2022-2023) for classes I to VIII, except for students of Class IX and X.
Innoka said the reason given was that, as per Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009, it was obligatory for government to provide free and compulsory elementary education (Classes I to VIII) to each and every child, besides providing mid-day meals etc. Innoka said minorities, particularly from the rural areas of the North Eastern region, were less advanced as compared to the majority in mainland.
He said scholarships were also a huge impetus apart from the freebies provided to get this portion of people to go to school.
While not getting into the details of the condition of most government schools in the state as well as the country, he said most parents send their children to private schools. He said the scholarship amount of Rs. 1000/- annum for day scholars of the primary section could cover some of their expenses.
Hoping that the scholarship scheme for elementary section would continue, Innoka also appealed to the Ministry concerned to reconsider/review its notice/decision, in the interest of the poorer and under-privileged sections of the society.

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