Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA)
Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RSMA) is aimed at expanding and improving the standards of secondary education — classes VIII to X. The RSMA would also take secondary education to every corner of the country by ensuring a secondary school (up to class X) within a radius of 5km for every neighbourhood. Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) which is the most recent initiative of Government of India to achieve the goal of universalisation of secondary education (USE).
The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan program set up by the government to bring elementary education to millions of children has been successful to a large extent, and has thus created a need for strengthening secondary education infrastructure across the country. The HRD Ministry has taken note of this, and now plans to implement a secondary education scheme called Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyaan (RMSA) during the 11th plan at a total cost of Rs.20,120 crore.
- The vision for secondary education is to make good quality education available, accessible and affordable to all young persons in the age group of 14-18 years. With this vision in mind, the following is to be achieved:
- To provide a secondary school within a reasonable distance of any habitation, which should be 5 kilometer for secondary schools and 7 -10 kilometers for higher secondary schools
- Ensure universal access of secondary education by 2017 (GER of 100%), and
- Universal retention by 2020,
- Providing access to secondary education with special references to economically weaker sections of the society, the educationally backward, the girls and the disabled children residing in rural areas and other marginalized categories like SC, ST, OBC and Educationally Backward Minorities (EBM)
Goal and Objectives
- In order to meet the challenge of Universalisation of Secondary Education (USE), there is a need for a paradigm shift in the conceptual design of secondary education.
- The guiding principles in this regard are; Universal Access, Equality and Social Justice, Relevance and Development and Curricular and Structural Aspects.
- Universalisation of Secondary Education gives opportunity, to move towards equity. The concept of ‘common school’ will be encouraged. If these values are to be established in the system, all types of schools, including unaided private schools will also contribute towards Universalisation of Secondary Education (USE) by ensuring adequate enrolments for the children from under privileged society and the children Below Poverty Line (BPL) families.
- To ensure that all secondary schools have physical facilities, staffs and supplies at least according to the prescribed standards through financial support in case of Government/ Local Body and Government aided schools, and appropriate regulatory mechanism in the case of other schools
- To improve access to secondary schooling to all young persons according to norms – through proximate location (say, Secondary Schools within 5 kms, and Higher Secondary Schools within 7-10 kms) / efficient and safe transport arrangements/residential facilities, depending on local circumstances including open schooling. However in hilly and difficult areas, these norms can be relaxed. Preferably residential schools may be set up in such areas
- To ensure that no child is deprived of secondary education of satisfactory quality due to gender, socio-economic, disability and other barriers
- To improve quality of secondary education resulting in enhanced intellectual, social and cultural learning
- To ensure that all students pursuing secondary education receive education of good quality
- Achievement of the above objectives would also, inter-alia, signify substantial progress in the direction of the Common School System
Approach and Strategy for Secondary Stage
Financing Pattern and Opening of Bank Account
- The Central Government will bear 75 percent of the cost to implement all the components (where funding is to be done on sharing basis between center and states under the scheme) for all States/ UTs except North Eastern States during the 11th Five Year Plan. For the North Eastern States, 90 percent of such cost will be borne by the Central Government.
- The State Governments and Union Territories will bear 25 percent of the cost to implement all the components (where funding is to be done on sharing basis between center and states under the scheme) during the 11th Five Year Plan. The North Eastern States will bear 10 percent of such cost
- The State Government will design a comprehensive Financial Management System for the transfer and use of funds through the existing SSA society. This must ensure transparency, efficiency and accountability, and track the use of funds towards the final outcomes
- Separate bank accounts shall be opened for funds under the scheme at the State, District and School levels. The accounts shall be opened in public sector banks. The Head Master or Principal & Vice Principal of the School Education Committee will be the joint holder of the account at School level; the District Programme Coordinator will be a joint holder of the account at the District level
- For the 12th Five Year Plan, the sharing pattern between Central and States will change to 50:50. For the North Eastern States, the sharing pattern will be 90:10 for both 11th and 12th Five Year Plans
In the context of Universalisation of Secondary Education (USE), large-scale inputs in terms of additional schools, additional classrooms, teachers and other facilities need to be provided to meet the challenge of numbers, credibility and quality. It inter-alia requires assessment/ provision of educational needs, physical infrastructure, human resource, academic inputs and effective monitoring of implementation of the programmes. The scheme will initially cover up to class X. Subsequently, the higher secondary stage will also be taken up, preferably within two years of the implementation. The strategy for universalizing access to secondary education and improving its quality are as under:
- There is a wide disparity in schooling facilities in different regions of the country. There are disparities among the private schools and between private and government schools. For providing universal access to quality secondary education, it is imperative that specially designed broad norms are developed at the national level and provision may be made for each State/UT keeping in mind the geographical, socio-cultural, linguistic and demographic condition of not just the State/UT but also, wherever necessary, of the locality. The norms for secondary schools should be generally comparable to those of Kendriya Vidyalayas. Development of the infrastructure facilities and Learning Resources will be carried out in following ways,
- Expansion/ Strategy of existing Secondary Schools & Higher Secondary Schools shift in existing schools
- Up gradation of Upper Primary Schools based on micro planning exercise with all necessary infrastructure facilities and teachers. Ashram Schools will be given preference while upgrading upper primary schools
- Up gradation of Secondary Schools in Higher Secondary Schools based upon the requirements
- Opening of new Secondary Schools/ Higher Secondary Schools in unserved areas bas on the school mapping exercise. All these buildings will have mandatory water harvesting system and will be disabled friendly
- Rain harvesting systems will be installed in existing school buildings also
- Existing school buildings will also be made disabled friendly
- New schools will also be set up in PPP mode
- Providing required infrastructure like, Black Board, furniture, Libraries, Science & Mathematics laboratories, computer labs, toilet cluster
- Appointment of additional teachers and in-service training of teachers
- Bridge course for enhancing learning ability for students passing out of class VIII
- Reviewing curriculum to meet the NCF, 2005 norms
- Residential accommodation for teachers in rural and difficult hilly areas
- Preference will be given to accommodation for female teachers
- Free lodging/ boarding facilities for students belonging to SC,ST,OBC and minority communities
- Hostels/ residential schools, cash incentive, uniform, books, separate toilets for girls
- Providing scholarships to meritorious/ needy students at secondary level
- Inclusive education will be the hallmark of all the activities. Efforts will be made to provide all necessary facilities for the differently abled children in all the schools
- Expansion of Open and Distance Learning needs to be undertaken, especially for those who cannot pursue full time secondary education, and for supplementation / enrichment of face-to-face instruction. This system will also play a crucial role for education of out of school children