Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel on Sunday said government schools in the state will be run as per international standards to provide quality education to students on the lines of the Swami Atmanand Government English Medium Schools, also known as SAGES.
He said the state government will also set up ‘Balwadi’ (kindergarten schools) for children above three years of age.
The CM made these announcements under the ‘Chhattisgarh school education vision document 2030’ while addressing the opening ceremony of the two-day Jawaharlal Nehru Rashtriya Shiksha Samagam, a congregation of educationists and innovative teachers being held here to mark the birth anniversary of the country’s first prime minister.
“On the lines of Swami Atmanand Government English Medium Schools (SAGES), (government) schools will be run in the state as per international standard to provide quality education to children…There should be schools of international level so that students from the state could shine at the international platform and bring laurels to the state,” Baghel said.
The state government had launched the SAGES scheme in November last year under which government Hindi medium schools were renovated and modernized into English medium schools. As many as 171 SAGES are being run in the state.
“Pre-primary education will be provided to children above three years of age by operating ‘balwadi’. We will do it by 2030. Besides, employment oriented education will be provided to the students of Classes IX to XII so that children can acquire skills in any particular discipline along with their studies,” he added.
Briefing about how the idea of starting English medium schools was conceptualized, Baghel said it was found during discussions amid the COVID-19 pandemic that the state did not have a hospital where an IAS officer and his family could go for treatment and nor does it have a school where IAS and IPS officials can send their children for studies.
“State School Education Minister Premsai Singh Tekam and Education department principal secretary Alok Shukla accepte
d the challenge and the decision was taken to start SAGES. It was started with three schools in Raipur and now there are 171 SAGES across the state,” the CM said.
Speaking on the occasion, Congress spokesperson Gaurav Vallabh said Nehru’s concept was based on “scientific temperament” which is not there in the incumbent Union government.
“Nehruji’s ‘parikalpana’ (hypothesis/concept) was the concept of scientific temperament. Unfortunately the concept of incumbent Central government is not of scientific temperament. In the concept of scientific temperament, you have the power to question ‘why’. If I am giving a speech here, then my fellow teachers (referring to audiences) can ask why are you speaking this. This was the concept which Nehruji gave to the country,” he said.
Nehru gave the concept of equity, inclusiveness, democracy and constitution, he added.