After three failed attempts, city gover nment schools have floated another tender in an attempt to attract uniform suppliers.
The move comes after the UT education department directed them to do so. According to sources in the education department, nearly 50% of the city’s 106 government schools failed to get the mandated response to their first three tenders.
However, even as schools reopen on Tueday, there seems to end in sight for the problem.
Under the circumstances, not only is delay in procurement inevitable, but also officials in the department said that under the circumstances, the exercise was not expected to conclude before September or October, almost towards the close of the session.
This would be the third consecutive delay in procuring the uniforms in over a year. Last year, the process of purchasing summer uniforms concluded in October, while several schools distributed last winter uniforms only in March this year.
Over one lakh students from Chandigarh government schools are eligible to receive free school uniforms under the Right to Education Act, 2009. While UT education department made the purchase until last year, in March 2013, the department entrusted the responsibility to schools, which were to procure their school uniform through their school management committees.
BEE IN SCHOOLS’ BONNETS
Schools, meanwhile, say that the process is increasingly proving to be a waste of time and resources.
“It’s high time the department reviews the policy and change its mode of procurement to plug delays,” she said.
Vinod Sharma, the president of Government Teachers Union, who is also the head of Government Model High School, Sector 34, said that the department, instead of asking individual schools to make their own purchases, must consider making the purchase at the cluster-level. Chandigarh’s government schools are divided into 20 clusters.
“Because of the size of the order, suppliers would find it more profitable and convenient. Besides it will also ensure that the big suppliers, who currently keep away citing the tedious process, also participate,” he said.
DEPARTMENT TO MEET SCHOOLS
Also worried about the lack of response, the education department will hold a meeting with schools that have failed to place their order so far on Tuesday.
The meeting, which will be held at Government Model Senior Secondary School , Sector 19, is expected to have DPI (S) Kamlesh Kumar chair it and discuss the issue in detail.