ONGOLE: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy said that we are taking the first steps to change the course of history of our schools today, with the Manabadi Nadu -Nedu programme in the State.
Addressing the gathering at a public meeting organized on the occasion of the launch of the programme at PVR boys' school grounds in Ongole on Thursday, he said that the Nadu–Nedu programme was turning a new leaf in the education sector.
The programme aims at transforming government schools into vibrant and competitive institutions and YS Jagan said that his government will overcome all the challenges and clear every hurdle as the goal is to meet the requirement of what the fast-changing technology in the world expects from youth ten years from now.
The Chief Minister said despite the criticism from detractors, we will go ahead with English medium schools as we have to prepare the students to boldly face and stand up to the requirements of the technology-driven world and we should not be found wanting and feel guilty if the generation next cannot be prepared to face the highly dynamic and technology-driven world.
Change will come only if the right decision is taken at the right time as we are competing with a job market that would be there five, ten or fifteen years from now.
The Chief Minister added that problems were bound to arise with the introduction of the English medium from one to sixth grade. However, for that Bridge courses will be set up to overcome them. We will also train teachers. The children will struggle for one or two years and they will continue in English medium. We will spend Rs 3,500 crore on schools every year and change the facets of 45,000 schools across the state in the near future, with a budget of Rs 12,000 crores, he assured. As part of the first installment, we will start with 15,700 schools in the first phase and by June 2020, we will have all the facilities in schools, he said.
There has been criticism and detractors have been running a campaign targeting me, but we will carry our mission and the future of next-generation is on top priority. We will transform all government schools with the required infrastructure and upgradation of skills besides setting up of English labs in addition to providing basic amenities like clean environs, furniture, toilets, running water, compound wall, blackboard, renovation and involve parent committee.
On the introduction of English medium from Classes 1 to 6, there are many detractors and those in high places have been making comments and they should realise that there is no place for hypocrisy in a democracy. They have to introspect if they are sending their children and grandchildren to government schools or to English Medium schools. This shows that they do not practice what they preach. Weaker sections and underprivileged should not be deprived of opportunities and we are providing them with such programmes.
The 2011 census says that our state illiteracy rate is 33 % and to uplift the marginalized sections we have to take bold decisions like switching over to English medium. There would be some difficulties and challenges but have to face and we will overcome, he said.
Only education can take the generation next forward, he said and had shown the children live examples showing them the Education Minister Adimulapu Suresh who studied in Telugu Medium, but shifted to English medium and went on to become an IRS Officer. Next to him were top bureaucrats Rajasekhar Reddy, and Dhanunjay Reddy both IAS officers who shifted to English medium in search of a better future and made their mark.
‘During my 3,648 km padayatra, I have seen family members pouring their woes out about the lack of level playing field as their children are left behind due to the non-availability of avenues. This was a conscious decision taken after due consideration and visualizing what our future generation requires in the new age of Artificial Intelligence(AI) and Robotics where driver-less cars would be coming into vogue.
In the coming days, we will be introducing Amma Vodi on January 9 where we will incentivize the mother for sending their children to school and continues till Intermediate and frees reimbursement will be taken up in a big way in all degree and professional colleges and there will be one-year apprenticeship for the youth to gear up for the jobs.
This apart a Skill Development University will be set up and under its umbrella, all 25 Skill Development Centres will function to have an interface with education and industry, he said.
We have created four lakh jobs, of which 1.3 lakh are in government, he said adding that though the road ahead is bumpy, he said.
A pictorial contrast of the schools then and now will be displayed to record the results of the efforts. The photographs showing the state in which government schools are today and how they will be after the scheme is completed with the nine parameters will be displayed for people to know about the metamorphosis.