Published: 08th July 2022
Single-teacher schools will no longer be allowed, says AP Education Minister
The Minister also said that the state was proceeding according to the National Education Policy and that no school was shut down in Andhra Pradesh
Andhra Pradesh's Education Minister Botcha Satyanarayana has made it clear that not even a single school in the state was closed and there were no such intentions from the government. Addressing a press conference from the state's party office in Guntur district's Tadepalle town on Thursday, July 7, Satyanarayana said that after independence, the YSRCP ruling government has brought reforms in the education sector in the country in accordance with the new education system.
According to a report by The New Indian Express, Satyanarayana said, "We are trying to educate everyone. Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy is working hard to provide the best education from the school level. The 'Amma Vodi' scheme was introduced to reduce dropouts and make it easier for children to go to school."
There are 42,750 schools in Andhra Pradesh. Satyanarayana pointed out that the government is setting up foundation schools according to the new education system and making changes in Anganwadis to that effect. Decisions are also being taken to improve standards of education from Grade I, he added. The Education Minister also informed that Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has said that schools should be available to all within a one-kilometre radius and that facilities should be developed to ensure that, including merging of schools wherever necessary. Only 5,250 schools have been mapped, according to the report by TNIE.
"It has come to our attention that 296 schools are located at a distance of more than a kilometre. We will definitely reconsider if students are troubled by it and will make changes accordingly," Satyanarayana said. The government has adopted the system of central schools and appointed subject teachers to make students compete with Kerala and Gujarat and the pact with EdTech company BYJU'S will help impart quality education to students of government schools, he added.
On the issue of "rationalising" of teachers, the Minister also said that Government Orders (117 and 84) have been issued and objections from teachers were noted. He said that the government has decided to make some changes accordingly. In a meeting held with the student leaders on July 7, they approved 90 per cent of government policies, the minister added. "We made it clear that English medium is a government policy. Teachers should follow the government policy. If there are any deficiencies, we will correct them. To that extent, we are fixing everything one by one," Satyanarayana said.
He reiterated that the state government is sincere towards education and is completely changing the educational standards by appointing a subject teacher from Grade III, in accordance with the CBSE syllabus. "No matter how many criticisms it receives, it will not go back. This is the policy of our government. Around 52,000 students have decreased in the 'Amma Vodi' scheme compared to last year as 75 per cent attendance is mandatory. We will not compromise on that and students should regularly attend school," he said.
The education minister addressed the protests from teachers on GO 117 on the reapportioning of teaching staff as per the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. He said that the government had thoroughly discussed GO 117, after which necessary changes were made and a new GO was issued. He added that single-teacher schools will no longer continue. "It is mandatory to have two teachers for every 20 children, along with the headmaster. We have stipulated in the new GO that there should be 36 children per teacher," he said.