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AP Govt school girl students still waiting for cycles

AP Govt school girl students still waiting for cycles
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The state government has gone back on its decision of providing cycles to girl students to reduce dropouts in government schools It has not implemented it during the last two academic years

Tirupati: The state government has gone back on its decision of providing cycles to girl students to reduce dropouts in government schools. It has not implemented it during the last two academic years.

The school education department has introduced ‘Badikostha’ scheme during 2016-17 to increasing the enrolment and attendance of girl students in government, Zilla Parishad, municipal and model schools by providing free cycles to Class IX girl students.

The students were given good cycles in that year which they can use even in Intermediate course. Students and parents felt very happy for this and there was an overall positive response for the scheme.

The government has been claiming that students are migrating to government schools from private schools owing to various incentives and increasing standards. Human resource development minister Ganta Srinivasa Rao speaking at a programme in Tirupati recently said 1.71 lakh students joined government schools from private schools in the state.

However, instead of relying on the schemes that contributed to this shifting of children, the government has abandoned the cycle distribution. As tenders were not finalised for 2017-18, Class IX students of that year have not received cycles and they are now in Class X.

The girls who have waited with enthusiasm to receive their new cycles were left with great disappointment. “By coming to school on cycles, girls get motivated. Besides, it would also increase their self-confidence,” observed a teacher.

This academic year too, there has been no movement in this front, though the year ends in four months. It is learnt that the school education department has now woken up and started reviewing the scheme.

According to sources, the department has decided to distribute the cycles to Class VIII and IX students this year before January 31 and finalised the price of each cycle as Rs.3,965. At this price, three companies were short listed to supply about 4 lakh cycles in the state.

However, the parents of Class X students have been seeking distribution of cycles to their children also as they missed them last year. They maintain that it will be unjust to omit 2017-18 batch students while giving benefit to the preceding and succeeding batches.

Chittoor district education officer Dr K Panduranga Swamy said that it was a policy decision and has to be taken by the higher authorities. They have sent the details of Class VIII and Class IX students to the state officials and they will take a final call. The district has about 3,3500 girl students in government, municipal, ZP and model schools.

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