Decks cleared for setting up of Adarsh Schools in Punjab

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Chandigarh, Feb 26 (UNI) The Punjab Education Development Board under the chairmanship of Chief Minster Parkash Singh Badal decided in principle to provide quality education to the economically poor and intelligent students free of cost in the 'Adarsh Schools' to be affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) in the state.

Presiding over the first meeting of the Board held late last evening at Kapurthala House, New Delhi after the amendment of the Punjab Education Development Act, 1998, Mr Badal said, "now the decks have finally cleared for the major expansion of modernised school education infrastructure in the state". He directed the school education department to immediately invite expression of interest in this regard.

It was also decided in the meeting that initially these schools would be set up in the rural areas in the close proximity of the block headquarters to attract highly qualified and talented teachers. Mr Badal also said that the teaching of Punjabi subject would be made compulsory up to class-X for the students of Adarsh Schools.

It was also informed in the meeting that the Central Government had already sanctioned a sum of Rs 75 crore as Additional Central Assistance for the setting up the Adarsh schools. Mr Badal directed the state Finance department to immediately release this amount to the Board for speedy implementation of this project.

The Chief Minister also conceded to the demand of the members of the Board for the direct transfer of the cess of Rs 37 crore levied and collected by the state Excise and Taxation Department in a separate head of Education Development Fund.

In the meeting the members from the corporate sector and companies impressed upon Mr Badal to allow them to run short term vocational courses in the premises of Adarsh schools in the evening to impart skilled training to the students and other interested unemployed youth to improve their chances of gainful employment.

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