Edu dept to offer door-to-door bus service for primary schools
The state government will start door-to-door transportation facilities to ferry children from the next academic year. As part of the initiative, 68 government primary schools of five districts have been identified to start the pick-and-drop service.
The pilot project is being launched in Fatehgarh Sahib, Sangrur, Fazilka, Mansa and Jalandhar districts. The department has also floated tenders to hire the bus service operator. An education department official said, “We have identified 24 government primary schools of Sangrur district, one from Fazilka, five from Mansa, 18 from Jalandhar and 30 schools from Fatehgarh Sahib district.”
Teachers’ Unions, however, have criticised the move, claiming that it was part of the government’s agenda to merge (amalgamation of) primary schools.
Davinder Singh Poonia, state president, Democratic Teachers Front (DTF), said, “The education department is moving towards the amalgamation of primary schools by offering the transportation service. The main motive of the government is to attract students from far-off places from their nearby schools to specific schools. By this method, the department wants to decrease the enrolment of some of its primary schools and then close these.”
Manoj Kumar, deputy state project director has confirmed the development. “We have floated tenders to hire the bus service to ferry children. The tenders will be opened next week. There are schools in the state, where children face transportation troubles. This forces their parents to drop them to school.” He added teachers’ fears were unfounded. “Our only aim in providing the facility is to make sure there is no transportation problem for students. It is the students’ wish on which school he/she wants to join.”