The M.K. Stalin-led Tamil Nadu government will soon constitute a high-level committee with educationists and experts to formulate a new state education policy in keeping with the historical legacy, present situation and future aspirations of the state.
The Tamil Nadu budget presented by Finance Minister P.T.R. Palanivel Thiaga Rajan laid emphasis on education, while allocating Rs 32,600 crore for school education. “This government is determined to ensure that Tamil Nadu is brought within the first three states in terms of learning outcomes in India,” Rajan said.
Though education is one of the subjects in the concurrent list, a new state education policy, say educational experts, can help the state in taking and formulating its own decisions and improve the Gross Enrolment Ration (GER) in the state-run schools and also the schools which follow the state syllabus.
In his budget speech, Rajan said that all teachers will be able to receive technology- enabled, monitorable and evidence-based training through 40 tablets supplied to each of the 413 blocks at a cost of Rs 13.22 crore. The Ennum Ezhuthum Mission to ensure foundational literacy and numeracy will be implemented to ensure that, by 2025, all students in Tamil Nadu till the age of 8 are able to read with comprehension and possess basic arithmetic skills. A provision of Rs 66.70 crore is made for this purpose. High-tech laboratories will be set up in 1,784 government middle schools at a cost of Rs 114.18 crore and smart classrooms will be established in 865 government high and higher secondary schools at a cost of Rs 20.76 crore.
Rajan also announced a waiver of Rs 2,756 crore loan owed by Self Help Groups (SHGs) to cooperative credit societies. The DMK government deferred the implementation of the promised cooperative jewel and farm loan waiver, citing irregularities in the previous AIADMK regime.
The ruling DMK on Friday presented its first budget on Friday, almost 100 days after coming to power on May 7. The maiden budget speech presented by Rajan was the first paperless E-Budget, showing the way for the government towards digital transformation. All the 234 MLAs had computers placed on the desk, as Rajan presented the budget.