Inequality allotment and the sustainability of central School discussed in the National Assembly
The Member from Kengkhar-Weringla constituency, MP Rinzin Jamtsho, questioned the Minister for Education on the inequality in the allotment of the central schools among Dzongkhags and impact of central schools on budget distribution to other schools. The member also questioned on the sustainability of the central schools programme last Friday during the question and answer session in the national assembly.
In his response, Lyonpo Mingbo Drukpa, the Minister for Education, said that introducing of the central schools is one of the three components of School Reform Policy which is aimed at improving the quality of education. He said that the capital expenditure for the central schools is funded by the government of India while the recurrent cost was being met from the domestic revenue. The Minister also added that establishing of the central schools is an ongoing process as the initiative was just over seven months old. Supplementing the response, Lyonpo Damchoe Dorji, the Minister for Foreign Affairs said that it was not possible to equally allot the central schools in all Dzongkhags. He added that establishment of central schools will differ from Dzongkhag to Dzongkhag considering the various factors.
In addition to the ques- tions, Member of Parliament from Pangbang constituency, MP Dorji Wangdi questioned that during the year 2014, the drooped out rate was about 3000 and during the year 2015, was about 5000, so it is a great concern for the country. He added that it may be because of the changes in the education policy. He also added on the inequality in the allotment of the central schools among Dzongkhags.
He said that although as per the section 16 of article 9 of the constitution of the Kingdom of Bhutan states that the state shall provide free education to all children of school going age up to tenth standard and ensure that technical and professional education is made generally available and that higher education is equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.
In response to the questions, Lyonpo Nyeema Sangay Tshempo, the Minister for Labour and Human Resources said that although they were aware of the dropped out rates of the youths. Lyonpo added that, as per his knowledge, the reason for youths not going to school was that they stayed in the village to help their parents. As per the constitution of the kingdom of Bhutan, state shall provide free education to all children of school going age up to tenth standard but if youths are not interested Lyonpo added that it is not possible for them to force youth to study.
So, for the dropped out rates is not only for the last two years but it exist even before also, added the Lyonpo.
While, Lyonpo Mingbo Drukpa said that the government was well aware of the concerns raised by the Members and such issues were also discussed in the cabinet on several occasions. The Minister acknowledged the consensus of the House on the importance of the Central School Programme and expressed that submissions made by the Members were only on the implementation aspects of the programme. Meanwhile, the objective of the education policy was to help those youth who are from economically backward and to provide with quality of education.