7.5.17 The scheme of Operation Blackboard was launched in 1987 in pursuance of NPE-POA, to provide minimum essential facilities to all primary schools in the country.
7.5.18 External evaluation of the scheme has indicated that lack of training of teachers in using the teaching material, specification of a large number of uniform facilities to be provided without modification according to local needs and lack of provision for breakage of equipment have been some of the draws of implementation of the scheme.
5.7.19 In order to operationalise the Revised Policy Formulations, the modified OB will contain the following three sub schemes:
i) Continuation of ongoing OB to cover all the remaining primary schools especially those in SC/ST areas;
ii) Expanding the scope of OB to provide three teachers and three rooms to primary schools wherever enrolment warrants them; and
iii) Expanding OB to upper primary schools to provide (a) at least one room for each class/section (b) a Headmaster-cum-office room, (c) separate toilet facilities for girls and boys, (d) essential teaching learning equipment including a library, (e) at least one teacher for each class/section and (f) a contingency grant for replenishment of items, consumable and minor repairs, etc.
7.5.20 The following measures will be taken to improve the quality of implementation of OB:
i) Teachers will be trained in using the OB teaching materials under a specially designed teacher training programme.
ii) State Governments will make provision for breakage and replacement of equipment.
iii) Enough flexibility will be provided for purchase of teaching learning materials relevant to the curriculum and the local needs.
iv) At least 50 per cent of the teachers appointed will be women. This will have a positive impact on girls’ enrolment and retention.
v) Wherever Micro-planning projects are taken up OB will form an integral part of Micro planning.
vi) As far as possible low cost and locally available designs relevant to the local conditions will be adopted for school buildings. Nirmithi Kendras (Building Centres) and local technical institutes will be associated in this endeavor.
7.5.21 As in the past, Central Government will provide funds for equipment and teachers’ salary for the plan period. The State governments will mobilize resources under JRY and other schemes for construction of school buildings, including Headmaster-cum-office room and toilet facilities. The State Governments will also provide contingency and replacement funds for equipment.
7.5.22 Ongoing OB will cover all schools by 1993-94. Other two sub-schemes will be started in the second half of the 8th Plan. About 30 per cent of the eligible schools will be provided three rooms and three teachers under the expanded OB by the end of 8th Plan and the remaining schools will be covered by the year A.D. 2000. Under the expanded OB a limited number of upper primary schools will be covered during the 8th Plan. Depending on the availability of funds, all upper primary schools will be covered by the year A.D. 2000.