Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has said the money being spent on education is an investment for a better future, while drastic changes in the medical and health sector are being brought in to bring quality medicare within the reach of the needy.
While rounding off the short discussion on ‘Vidya Vaidyam - Nadu Nedu’ in the Legislative Assembly here on Tuesday, Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy said the State government had been striving not just for Right to Education but for ‘right to English medium’ and ‘right to higher education’ with incentives from pre-primary to college education, while the previous TDP government had tried to push back the government schools into oblivion to benefit corporate schools with vested interests.
Gross Enrolment Ratio
“We have chalked out our priorities well and want to see that the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) is drastically improved by providing incentives and also revamping the schools under the Nadu-Nedu. We have instructed that 12 visible changes should be in place in the government schools — toilets, clean drinking water, repairs, tube lights and fans, furniture for students and teachers, green chalkboards, painting, English lab, compound wall, kitchen shed, additional rooms and digital interactive panels,” said Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy.
Besides government schools, even pre-primary foundation schools and anganwadi hostels are also being developed under Nadu-Nedu.
In the first phase, 15,715 schools were revamped at a cost of ₹3,700 crore and the digitisation of classrooms would be in place from the next academic year.
Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy explained the works taken up at schools in Naravaripalli and Kuppam through a PowerPoint presentation.
We should ask former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu why he had left these schools to gather dust and why he had disdain for government schools, said Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy.
Stating that revolutionary reforms in education brought in qualitative changes, he said that the GER had improved after the State government started focussing on revamping schools.
“The GER in primary schools for 2015-16 was poor and we could increase it drastically through schemes such as Amma Vodi, Goru Muddha, Vidya Deevena and Vasathi Devena. While government schools had 37.20 lakh students in 2018-19, it increased to 44.29 lakh in 2021-22,” he said.
Amma Vodi is a unique scheme under which the mother is incentivised to send her children to school with ₹15,000 per annum with the rider of 75% attendance and ₹1,000 each should be contributed toward Toilets and School Maintenance Funds for upkeep of schools. During the three years, ₹19,617 crore was spent under the scheme.
Under ‘Goru Muddha’, with daily changing menu and nutritious food, the State had been spending ₹1,800 crore, while it was just ₹450 crore annually by the previous government, which did not clear the dues, he said.
Jagananna Vidya Kanuka kits with a school bag, bilingual textbooks, work books, notebooks, three pairs of uniform, shoes, two pairs of socks, and dictionary are being given to students on the school reopening day which cost about ₹886 core. For class 8 students and teachers, 5.18 lakh tabs would be given in November last week under the scheme. The tabs would have a preloaded Byjus content, which would serve as a home tutorial, the Chief Minister said. The Byjus content, which costs about ₹24,000, would be given free of cost.
“Vidaya Deevena is the other incentive where full fees reimbursement is given along with Vasathi Devena, which takes care of the hostel and mess charges and the total amount works out to ₹11,717 crore, Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy said.
In the medical sector , YSR Village Clinics and the concept of Family Doctor is being worked out so that Village Clinics and PHCs take care of preventive medicine, while the CHCs, area and district hospitals take care of the curative treatment.
Every mandal will have four doctors and two ambulances with one doctor and an ambulance touring villages assigned and the regular visits would familiarise the patients and their ailments, thus developing a rapport.
“Of the 10,032 village clinics, 3,673 are ready and an amount of ₹1,692 crore spent and the project will be completed by the end of the year. Staff recruitment will be done by October 15,” he said.
In addition to the 11 teaching hospitals, another 17 would come up and construction was at various stages. “The medical and health sector has improved drastically when compared to the previous government,” he said.