|Sportstar Aces Awards 2023 | VOTE FOR TOP CATEGORIES

Noon meal scheme: primary head teachers approach High Court against denial of funds

They highlight that noon meal officers, Assistant Education Officers have no right to cut funds as distribution of milk, eggs not part of Central scheme

January 25, 2023 08:11 pm | Updated January 26, 2023 10:44 am IST - Kozhikode

A group of aided primary head teachers from various districts has approached the Kerala High Court against what they called denial of funds for noon meal scheme in schools.

The teachers claimed that noon meal officers attached to the General Education department were found to be cutting funds earmarked for eggs and milk. They alleged that it was happening at a time when a majority of head teachers were finding it difficult to run the scheme because of inadequate allocation of funds and price rise.

One of the head teachers from Malappuram claimed that the funds earmarked were just enough to buy cereals and vegetables. Sometimes, the teachers are forced to reduce the quantity of milk and eggs. Citing this as a violation of guidelines, the officials cut the subsequent allocation for many schools.

In their petition, the teachers highlighted that noon meal officers and Assistant Education Officers had no right to cut funds as distribution of milk and eggs was not part of the noon meal scheme of the Centre.

They said the government was still following the expense per student fixed in 2016. For schools with a student strength of 150, each is allotted ₹8 a day. For those with a strength of 500 students, it is ₹7. Schools with more than 500 students will get only ₹6 per student. The rates have not been revised till now.

Besides, students are supposed to get eggs and milk as part of the State government’s supplementary nutrition scheme. Each student needs 300 millilitres of milk a week, the cost of which was ₹39 in 2016. Now, it costs ₹52. The price of egg was over ₹3 earlier. Now, it is over ₹6. This is given twice a week. The price of LPG refill per cylinder and that of vegetables have also substantially gone up.

The teachers are also expected to pay transportation costs. They pointed out that in a school with a student strength of 100, head teachers were forced to spend around ₹1,300 a day from their own pockets to meet expenses. In a month, it goes above ₹25,000, they said.

Top News Today


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.