For universalization of elementary education across the country the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) is implemented as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme in partnership with State Governments. The Central and the State Governments have the concurrent responsibility to implement this Scheme. The existing fund sharing pattern between the Central and the State Government is in the ratio of 60:40 except for the 8 North-Eastern States viz. Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim & Tripura and 3 Himalayan States viz. Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh & Uttrakhand where the ratio is 90:10. The Central Government funds 100% in case of Union Territories for implementation of the Scheme with effect from 2015-16. The Central share is released in two or more installments to the State Governments/UT Administrations as per the prevalent criteria laid down in the Scheme.
Apart from the financial assistance provided to State Governments, various initiatives have been taken up by the Central Government to meet the objectives of SSA scheme in accordance with the legal framework of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009. Some of these are:-
- Since the inception of SSA in 2001 till 31.3.2016, 3.64 lakh new elementary schools, construction of 3.11 lakh school buildings, and 18.61 lakh additional classrooms, 2.38 lakh drinking water facilities, 10.14 lakh school toilets and 19.48 lakh teacher posts have been sanctioned to States and UTs.
- Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBVs) have been opened in Educationally Backward Blocks (EBBs) where the female rural literacy is below the national average to provide for residential upper primary schools for girls. 3609 KGBVs have been sanctioned till 31.3.2016, out of which 3599 KGBVs are operational in the country enrolling 3.64 lakh girls.
- Under Swachh Vidyalaya initiative, 4,17,796 toilets were constructed in 2,61,400 elementary and secondary government schools in a period of one year from 15.8.2014 to 15.8.2015, thus ensuring that every government school has separate functional toilets for girls and boys. The initiative was made successful in partnership with all State Governments, 64 Public Sector Undertakings, and 12 Private Corporates. With this, about 13.58 crore children in 11.08 lakh government schools have access to gender segregated toilets.
- The number of children with special needs that have been brought into the fold of education (through enrolment in formal schools, school readiness programme and through home-based education) is 23.18 lakh as per the Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) 2014-15.
- The State Governments and UT Administrations are supported on several interventions to improve teaching standards, including regular in-service teachers’ training, induction training for newly recruited teachers, training of all untrained teachers to acquire professional qualifications through Open Distance Learning (ODL) mode, recruitment of additional teachers for improving pupil-teacher ratios, academic support for teachers through block and cluster resource centres, continuous and comprehensive evaluation system to equip the teacher to measure pupil performance and provide remedial action wherever required, and teacher and school grants for development of appropriate teaching-learning materials, etc.
The implementation of SSA is reviewed twice every year by a Joint Review Mission comprising independent experts and external funding agencies covering States. The Ministry of Human Resource Development convenes periodic meetings with State Education Ministers and Secretaries to review the programme implementation. Educational data on outcomes is collected through a Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) every year. The status of these evaluations and monitoring is placed in the public domain on the Ministry’s website. National Achievement Surveys (NAS) are conducted to check the health of the educational system and to provide information about the learning achievement of students. In this sample surveys, standardized tests and questionnaires are used to get learning achievement data and background information.
This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Sh. Prakash Javadekar today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question