Provision of universal access

7.5.1 Existing schemes will be suitably modified and measures will be taken to incorporate the new policy formulations.

Formal Schooling

7.5.2 New primary schools according to the norms, will be opened in unserved habitations. NFE centers will be opened in smaller habitations and for children who cannot benefit from the school system. In addition, a new scheme of Voluntary Schools will be launched to achieve universal access for children in different areas.

7.5.3 Primary Schools: in 1986, it was estimated that there were approximately 32,000 habitations with a population of 300 or more that required primary schools. Though many new schools have been opened, new habitations have also come into existence, and it is estimated that 35,000 new schools will be required. These schools will be opened by the State Governments following the norms specified under Operation Blackboard.

7.5.4 Upper Primary Schools: In order to increase enrolments at the upper primary stage, the infrastructure at this stage will be expanded. The existing norm of providing an upper primary school within 3 km. Walking distance is generally inconvenient for girls. This norm will be relaxed and the new ratio between primary and upper primary schools will be 2:1. Action will be taken in the next 5 years to upgrade every second primary school to the upper primary level. It will be primarily the responsibility of the State Governments to observe this norm for school-mapping.

7.5.5 In order to achieve UEE the school system will have to cater to about 18 crore ( 1 crore = 10 million) children. This calls for increasing the number of teachers from the present 27 lakhs to 45 lakhs based on the teacher pupil ratio of 1:40. The increase in student population would also require an additional 11 lakh class rooms to be built in the next 7 years.

Forty Years of Arun C Mehta at NIEPA: 1980 to 2019 (e-Book)

Forty years of Arun C Mehta at NIEPA: 1980 to 2019

Times of India, New Delhi, 21st September 2021

UDISE, Interview of Prof. Arun C Mehta in Times of India, New Delhi, 21st September 2021