After government schools, now aided schools in Punjab are directed to start serving mid-day meal in their school from July 1. There are around 434 aided schools in Punjab, of which 58 are in Ludhiana, all are directed to serve mid-day meal after summer vacations in their schools.
Talking to Hindustan Times, general manger of state mid-day meal cell, SAS Nagar, Prabcharan Singh said, “Few aided schools in Punjab are already serving the meal but according to the Right to Education Act, every government and aided school is entitled to provide mid-day meal to their students. So, we have directed all aided schools in state to start serving the meal from July 1.”
He added, “Funds for cooking cost and kitchen shed will be provided by the state. Food grains will be supplied by the Food Corporation of India. The aided school heads are directed to provide the strength of their schools so that before July 1 food grains can be send to their schools. Even the district education officers are directed to hold meetings with the school managements and principals so that they can start serving the meal from July 1.”
Each aided school will get free-of-cost wheat and rice (100g for each primary kid, and 150g for each upper primary child) from the nearest storage facility of the Food Corporation of India (FCI).
The cooking cost will be`3.59 for primary schools (Class 1 to 5) and `5.38 for upper primary schools (Class 6 to 8). It is pertinent to mention here that the mid-day meal accounts of government schools are running low every month due to insufficient funds released by the state.
Principal of an aided school, at condition of anonymity, said, “In government schools, teachers contribute from their pocket to run the mid-day meal scheme but teachers in aided school get salary after three to four month. So, how this scheme will run in aided schools if the government will not release sufficient funds.