BMC budget: E-learning tools, upgrades to make civic school students tech-savvy
The BMC set the budget for the year 2017-18 at Rs2,311.66 croremumbai Updated: Mar 30, 2017 00:15 IST
Upgrades for 26 municipal schools, digital learning tools at 1,200 schools and monetary incentives for differently-abled students — these are some of the provisions for 2017-18 promised in the BMC’s education budget, tabled on Wednesday.
The BMC set the budget for the year 2017-18 at Rs2,311.66 crore, 3% less than last year’s budget of Rs2,394.40 crore. Of this amount, Rs358.09 crore is the capital budget, which will be spent on infrastructure, and Rs1,953.57 crore is slotted for revenue, which includes teachers’ salaries and other expenses.
“The civic body and government’s budget for education and health, two of the country’s essential services has been declining every year, since the BJP-led government came to power,” said Ramesh Joshi, head of the civic-school teachers union. “Of the estimated budget, hardly 20 to 25% is actually spent,” he said.
On the bright side, Rs1.60 crore has been allocated as an attendance allowance for physically disabled (Divyang) students. Each student will get Rs10 if they attend school regularly. This will benefit 4, 094 children with special needs studying in civic schools and 850 studying in 17 special schools
Additionally, an annual scholarship scheme will be implemented for differently-abled students from Class 1 to Class 10 who secure a ‘B’ grade or above in the first and second semester exams.
The budget also includes provisions to improve the students’ physical fitness. In a first, around Rs31 was are allotted to provide students with free sports uniforms. They will wear red, blue, green and yellow sports uniforms once a week, depending on the timetable. The idea is to create an interest in sports among civic students.
Coaches will be paid to train students. In 21 sports centres, 21 coaches and seven trained teachers will be recruited to train 612 students who are 10 to 12 years old. However, teachers complained that physical education teachers were not given any incentives.
In keeping with the Maharashtra government’s ‘Pragat Shaikshanik Maharashtra’, programmes focusing on increasing the basic competencies of students will be implemented.