More than 2 lakh students have left private schools in Andhra Pradesh to join government schools in 2020, according to the state government. "A total of 42.46 lakh students have enrolled themselves in government and government aided schools this year, which is 2.68 lakh more than the enrolment figure from 2019, which stood at 39.78 lakh," said an official statement.
The shift has been propelled by various schemes introduced to encourage public education, the government has said.
Out of the increased admissions of around 2.68 lakh, 2,01,833 students have reportedly chosen to leave private schools for studies in public schools. "Government's success in reversing the trend can be attributed to a plethora of student - parent oriented schemes implemented since 2019. Amma Vodi, Nadu-Nedu and Jaganna Vidya Kanuka form the base of the government's drive to place government schools at par with their corporate counterparts," said an official, according to IANS. As part of these schemes, the state government is revamping infrastructure at government schools, distributing free school kits and providing financial assistance to mothers of school students.
Under the Amma Vodi scheme, eligible mothers of students from classes 1 to 12 are receiving Rs 15,000 as an annual incentive, so they are not forced to discontinue their children's education out of financial difficulties. As part of Nadu-Nedu, the state government is renovating over 45,000 schools in an effort to provide better facilities to government schools students.
"Apart from major infrastructural renovations, each of the schools will also be equipped with a dedicated English lab in order to facilitate modern learning. 15,715 schools were taken up in the first phase of the project and are expected to be finished by January, 2021," said the official.
Jagananna Vidya Kanuka offers basic necessities to students for free, such as school bags, uniforms, books, socks, belts and others. "This not only reduces the financial turmoil that poor families are put through at the start of each academic year but also helps the government control dropout rates," said the official.
All branches of education, from kindergarten to college and university in the state have a strong presence of corporate institutions, often taking students and parents for a ride with false promises. The state government has announced its intention to bring reforms in the education sector in a big way. It has switched to making intermediate admissions only through online mode for first year students this year, as part of these changes.