Six years after seven primary schools were transferred from the UT administration to the municipal corporation in July 2010, mayor Arun Sood has proposed that these be handed over to the education department for ‘proper coordination’ and to ‘avoid mismanagement’.
“The management of the schools should either be completely under the MC or the education department should take full charge,” the mayor said at the meeting of the district-level committee formed two months back to look into school-related issues, on Tuesday. Chandigarh Member of Parliament Kirron Kher chaired the meet.
At the sidelines of the meeting, the mayor told HT, “The MC has been made responsible only for the buildings, while the department looks after the operational work.”
Crumbling buildings hard to explain
Incidentally, 90% of the primary education budget that the MC has allocated in its budget since the schools were transferred to it has remained unspent. Even the buildings, which the mayor admits are under the MC, have not been renovated and remain in a shambles Although the MC managed to get two or three schools partially renovated, the lack of chairs, tables, proper blackboards is a serious hindrance to proper functioning of these schools.
An education department official said since senior operational decisions like staff and other infrastructure remained in the department’s hands, differences did crop up between the MC and the administration.
School education deputy director Chanchal Singh said, “In the present arrangement, if we wanted to upgrade a government primary school to a middle school, we could not do so. Now, we will be able to do so.”
Director school education Rubinderjit Singh Brar, however, said he was comfortable with any decision that was passed in the MC House.
The final call on the transfer of schools will be taken only after consultations with the UT adviser, the education secretary and other officials.