Private unaided schools in Bangalore appear to be playing spoilsport to the State government’s ambitious ‘Hejje Gurutu’ project to provide a 17-digit code to all students from Class 1 to 10 in an effort to streamline the child’s academic performance.
Though the data pertaining to as many as 98.56 lakh children out of the estimated 1 crore has already been gathered, the remaining, which pertains to mostly students in private schools in Bangalore, is yet to be collected.
The project was launched in January 2013 to create a unique code for every child in government, aided and unaided schools so that the academic record of all students can be tracked till they complete Class 10. Last year, the department decided to include the photo of the child along with data under 28 other heads such as the date of birth, medium of instruction, attendance, whether or he/she comes under any reservation among others.
An official said private unaided institutions in the city were not sharing the data. Data pertaining to as many as 1.5 lakh children across the State has to be obtained to make the ‘Hejje Gurutu’ project a success. He explained that while most of the 1.5 lakh children are students of private unaided schools, the number also includes the data that has been duplicated by the schools. As many as 1.16 lakh students are from Bangalore and 34,000 are from other districts in the State.
“So far, we have received data pertaining to 5.62 lakh children of the 6.01 lakh school-going children in Bangalore North. In Bangalore South, we have received data pertaining to 7.58 lakh children out of the 8.31 lakh children,” said an official from the Department of Primary and Secondary Education.
According to the official, in the past two years the department has focussed on collecting and corroborate the data, and in the next academic year only additions and deletions will be made. “But before that the data needs to be streamlined if the purpose of the project has to be achieved,” the official added.
The official also said that if the project was streamlined, it would help in ensuring that all the benefits of government schemes such as midday meal scheme, Rs. 2 for the girl child incentive scheme, textbooks, uniforms and cycle scheme reach the target beneficiaries. The data would also help the department identify the number of out-of-school children and reduce the transition loss.
Commissioner for Public Instruction Mohammad Mohsin said private schools that do not co-operate would be taken to task, and it would be ensured that there is no duplication of data.
D. Shashi Kumar, organising secretary of the Karnataka State Private Schools Managements’ Federation, refuted the charges and said that private schools had submitted the data to the office of the Block Education Officer concerned, and alleged that there was lack of coordination in the Department of Primary and Secondary Education.