Amaravati: Giving a clarion call for sweeping changes in education by strengthening the government schools and improving enrollment rates, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has said that teachers play a pivotal role in sculpting the future of the children by laying a strong foundation on moral and ethical grounds and said the State should aim at achieving hundred percent literacy rate.

Addressing the main function of Teachers’ Day Celebrations held at A Plus Convention Centre near here on Thursday, the Chief Minister said that his Government has started many path-breaking schemes and has the strong will to improve the standards of education but the main vehicles that would drive the children to the intended goal would be teachers.

Amma Vodi, Fees Reimbursement and paying Rs 20,000 annually for hostel and mess charges are some of the initiatives from the government side to encourage enrollment and progress in education while it is the teacher who has to mould the child as responsible future citizens.

‘During my 3,648 km padayatra, I had seen and I was told about the pathetic manner in which the government schools were in, with no teachers, no enrollments, no pay, insufficient number of teachers, mid-day meals being stopped with mounting dues to the groceries supply, non-payment of salaries to the staff and schools are in a dilapidated condition.

Books and uniforms were not given to students on time and many of schools were unhygienic with lack of running water, toilets and other necessary infrastructure. The government of the day did not give priority to education and people have come and told me time and again about their plight. That was when the Amma Vodi scheme has take shape.

We ensure that the infrastructure of government schools will be improved in three years by improving the infrastructure give a pictorial comparison of the schools now and after the renovation. We have to go in for the active participation of Parents in the child’s education with periodic interaction with teachers besides converting all government schools in to English medium schools which will draw the attention of more and more parents towards Government schools, he said.

‘The onus lies on your shoulders to shape the child’s future and we should be looking towards zero percent illiteracy rate,’ he said. While the national average illiteracy rate is 27 % our State stands at 33 % which is not a good sign and with the government initiatives and your commitment we can bring the down the rate to zero percent.

On higher education level, among the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) nations, the average enrollment of youth between 18 and 22 years is highest in Russia followed by Brazil and China while our nation tails the table. To change this situation we have introduced fees reimbursement and are giving allowance for hostel and mess charges and the ratio should improve in the coming days, he said.

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