"The students of Government schools in the state would get uniforms and books till 28th February before next academic session." This was disclosed by the Education Minister, Punjab, in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha today. The minister said this while allaying the fears of the MLAs which they expressed regarding the Punjab School Education Board (Amendment) Bill, 2017. The minister in a forthright manner with facts replied to the queries raised by each MLA.Mrs. Chaudhary said that quality education is being ensured by the Punjab Government under the leadership of the Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh. She further said that the state government has taken a revolutionary step by starting pre-primary classes and Punjab became the first state to undertake such a measure. Divulging more, the minister said that now, the kids of 3-6 years of age would be able to take admission in pre-primary classes in the government schools. Before this, the children under 6 years of age were faced with the option to sit at home or take admission in the private schools.
Replying to the query concerning highhandedness of the private schools posed by MLAs, the minister said that the regulatory authority is doing its job finely and if any school increases the fees more than 8 times then the parents or the students can lodge a complaint with the commissioner at the divisional level. The minister while speaking on the issue of closing of 800 schools raised by the an opposition MLA, said that such statements do not behove the legislator. She said that the government is only merging schools having less than 20 students with the nearby schools which do not have another school within 1 kilometre radius. Disclosing more, she said that many schools in the state have less than 5 students. Mrs. Chaudhary said that for constructive educational atmosphere in the state, there ought to be atleast 20 students in a school.Elaborating on the recruitment of the teachers, the Education Minister said that recently 1600 teachers have been recruited and the process of recruiting 3582 teachers is under process.
Adding more, the minister said that the Education Department is effecting rationalizing of the teachers which would make the picture clear regarding the places which are facing shortage of the teachers and where there are surplus teachers. Disclosing further, the minister said that there is a proposal also to constitute a separate cadre of border areas to make good the shortfall of the teachers in the schools of these areas. The minister also added that the department has also cancelled the temporary duties to fulfill the shortfall of teachers and also that the department is going in for promotion of teachers.Speaking on the Punjab School Education Board (Amendment), 2017 , Mrs. Chaudhary said that the previous government had created the post of the Senior Vice Chairperson to favour a special person which was totally uncalled for. Now, with the amendment this post has been cancelled because already the board has Chairman, Vice Chairman and Secretary. Similarly, the second amendment has once again re-established the condition of experience of 15 years for the board chairperson.