Educated sarpanches work to provide better schools in Haryana villages | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Educated sarpanches work to provide better schools in Haryana villages

The Haryana government’s move to fix the minimum education qualification for those contesting panchayat elections may have shut the doors for many aspirants in the rural areas, but the move set to ensure a bright future for children in these villages. The education bar has led to selection of highly educated panchayats, which are now working in their respective villages to upgrade the quality of education in government schools.

india Updated: Apr 15, 2017 12:43 IST
Hardik Anand
(Clockwise from left) Sarpanch Mukesh Devi, sarpanch Manju Tongar and sarpanch Ram Niwas Joon.
(Clockwise from left) Sarpanch Mukesh Devi, sarpanch Manju Tongar and sarpanch Ram Niwas Joon.(HT Photos)

The Haryana government’s move to fix the minimum education qualification for those contesting panchayat elections may have shut the doors for many aspirants in the rural areas, but the move set to ensure a bright future for children in these villages. The education bar has led to selection of highly educated panchayats, which are now working in their respective villages to upgrade the quality of education in government schools.

SAVES SCHOOL FROM BEING DEFUNCT

Sarpanch name: Mukesh Devi 

Highest qualification:MA (Political Science) 

Village: Iqbalpur Nangal, Mahendragarh 

Had it not been for this sarpanch, the government primary school in the village would soon have become defunct with only two students left to study. However, with Devi’s efforts, the school saw 105 new admissions this year. The sarpanch said she constituted a 21-member committee of retired employees and teachers in the village, who, besides promoting the government school also identified poor children who were not going to any school. “We started by requesting the well respected people of village to shift their children to government schools. Soon, more followed the suit,” she said. Mahendragarh district education officer Mukesh Kumar Lawania said she actively takes part in school cleaning activities as well. 

WAR AGAINST PRIVATE SCHOOLS 

Sarpanch name: Manju Tongar 

Highest qualification: MA (history) 

Village: Gujar Ghatal, Rewari 

Through her door-to-door campaign, Manju has been able to ensure over 200 new admissions in the Government Senior Secondary School in her village this year. The villagers said her campaign has become so successful that private schools in the area have started troubling students by delaying their school leaving certificates. As new students are coming from private schools, she has now written to the government to switch the village school to English medium. “If we are asking people to shift to government schools, we will also have to ensure equally good facilities. Besides starting free bus service for girls, the panchayat has introduced incentives for students topping in classes,” she said. Appreciating Manju’s efforts, Rewari district education officer Dharamvir Baldodia said she is helping the school improve infrastructure as well.

EDUCATION AND SAFETY TOPS HIS PRIORITY  

Sarpanch name: Ram Niwas Joon 

Highest qualification: Class 12 

Village:Khungai, Jhajjar 

As most government schools in his village were facing a staff crunch, Ram Niwas engaged private schools teachers to teach in government schools by giving them salary from panchayat funds. From 57 students last year, the Government High School in the village now has a strength of more than 150 students due to the modern facilities. Besides 16 CCTV cameras, the school has a special school dress, a park with swings and free pick-up facility for children from neighbouring villages. “Private schools only care about fees and not students’ safety. By introducing these facilities, we want to assure parents that their children will be safe in government schools as well,” he said. School principal Satya Narayan Yadav said they get all the support from the village panchayat.