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February 01, 2021 Monday 04:38:50 PM IST

Budget 2021 proposes 15,000 schools to be converted to “exemplar schools

Policy Indications

More than 15,000 schools will be qualitatively strengthened to include all components of the National Education Policy and to enable them to emerge as exemplar schools in their regions in 2021-2022, said the Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman while presenting the budget 2021-22 in Parliament today. She also stated that 100 new Sainik Schools will be set up in partnership with NGOs/private schools/states. The Finance Minister also proposed to set up a Higher Education Commission of India as an umbrella body having 4 separate vehicles for standard-setting, accreditation, regulation, and funding.

The minister said: “Many of our cities have various research institutions, universities, and colleges supported by the Government of India. Hyderabad for example has about 40 such major institutions. In 9 such cities, we will create formal umbrella structures so that these institutes can have better synergy, while also retaining their autonomy. A glue grant will be set aside for this purpose."  The minister also proposed to set up a Central University in Leh for accessible higher education in Ladakh.

Other major announcements include: National Language translation will be available on the internet in regional languages, in line with the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. Regional national institutes for virology will be established. National Research Foundation (NRF) will get an outlay of Rs 50,000 crore over five years to strengthen research and focus on the national priority trust area. A portal to collect info on gig-workers, building, and construction workers, among others will be launched by the government.750 Eklavya Model residential schools in tribal areas will be set-up. The Apprenticeship Act will be amended to increase opportunities for students. It will ensure a post-education apprenticeship. The training of graduates and diploma holders in engineering will be trained under the scheme.

Ministry of education got an allocation of Rs 93,224 crores. Of the total, the school education and literacy section was allotted the majority of funds with Rs 54873.66 crore, and the remaining Rs 38,350.65 crore was allotted to the higher education sector.