JAMMU: The Jammu and Kashmir Government is soon coming up with a ‘concept note’ envisaging measures to identify and fill critical gaps in elementary education with the assistance of United Nations International Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF), India Chapter.
The International Organization has offered its services to frame a workable ‘concept note to contain dropout rate, conduct studies for promotion of girl education and suggest means for human resource skill development and strengthening teachers’ training institutes etc.
In this regard, Minister for Education Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari chaired a high level meeting here today which was attended by Secretary School Education, Farooq Ahmed, UNICEF India Representative, Dr.Yasmeen Ali and UNICEF India CEO Euphrates Efosi, besides Additional Secretary School Education, Masrat ul Islam, Director School Education Jammu, Ravinder Singh, Project Director SSA, AR Waar and Project Director RUSA Tufail Matoo.
UNICEF India has already adopted three districts of Budgam, Leh and Rajouri and through its affiliated NGOs, it is working with SSA directorate to improve quality of Primary education in these hilly districts.
Identifying elementary education as the soft under-belly of the state education system, the education minister stated that the government will collaborate with all stakeholders to prepare a roadmap to rejuvenate the primary education sector of the State.
Describing elementary education as the cog-in-the wheel of the education sector, the minister said that the state Government will involve UNICEF in uplifting the education sector at primary and Upper primary levels, especially towards monitoring the interventions made by the Department for quality Education at the Elementary level. “I hope UNICEF will put together the efforts to collaborate with the Government of Jammu and Kashmir in monitoring learning levels at Primary level and identify and engage community partners and to find children who are out of school” he said.
The minister said that education was worst hit by constant turbulence in Jammu and Kashmir and the loss at all levels can be tide over only through education. He said state government would try all options to steer the education sector out of the dark clouds adding that the state has recently signed an MoU with UMHRD on the same lines and roping in of UNICEF would come as an added advantage.
Dr Yasmeen Ali assured the minister that UNICEF will proactively engage with the State Government to turn around the Elementary Education profile of the State. She said that UNICEF expertise in activity passed learning and has a five cycle plan to achieve the set targets.
She assured the minister to further scale up engagement of UNICEF in various initiatives being taken by the SSA.