The Minister for Education, Naeem Akhtar, Friday said Jammu and Kashmir is setting new trends for the rest of the country to emulate in the education sector. Replying to a Calling Attention Notice moved by MLA Javed Ahmad Rana, Akhtar said the Education Department has set up 30 parental care centres for those students whose parents may not be well-read. “It is a revolutionary idea for uplifting the underprivileged students of our state. We are becoming trendsetters for the entire country,” Akhtar said. Throwing light on the state of the Education Department in Poonch, the Minister said the hilly district figures in the bottom of the State in terms of results. “The performance of teachers from the district has been abysmal. The MLA must also share responsibility of those children of lesser God in Poonch,” he said. Earlier, Rana, while moving the Notice, called the attention of the government towards the situation that has arisen “due to clubbing or closing of Primary Schools by the Education Department.” The Education Minister, in his response, said rationalization of teaching staff is an ongoing process and the objective is to provide quality education to children right from the primary stage. “3582 schools have been brought under rationalization. This has resulted in availability of 5534 surplus teachers who have been deployed to other institutions with higher enrollment as also to the schools with secondary sections to meet the teaching faculty requirement,” Akhtar said. The Education Minister said his ministry is examining a proposal to introduce pre-primary classes in government schools. “In the coming days, the department will also preferably provide as many teachers to schools as classes. While undertaking this exercise, due care is being taken to ensure that the SSA norms are followed in providing schooling facility within the prescribed distance and also taking cognizance on any natural barrier that may adversely affect accessibility or any other factor,” Akhtar said. “In District Poonch, 157 schools have been co-located in the process of rationalization to maintain Pupil-Teacher ratio. The process yielded 369 surplus teachers who were adjusted in schools with high enrolment or deficient staff,” Akhtar said.
2015 Kashmir Despatch