I know you had and have a tough job in hand. Some of the actions are certainly changing the perception of the outsiders about Bihar. However, Bihar requires some fast track action plans that can make as quick an impact in development as you claim to have achieved in law and order situation in the state. Media have less news about kidnappings. Many of the political parties backed dons are behind the bars and have been convicted too.
Bihar must do something drastic about educating and skilling its younger people, who are to join the workforce. Every village has some retired teachers and persons from the defence forces in Bihar. I suggest using the services of these people who already get paid pensions from the government.
Can’t you request and push all the retired teachers from the villages to attach themselves with the schools of their locality to get their pensions? Let them help in covering up the absenteeism of regular teachers, coaching the students that are weaker than the average particularly those from deprived classes, or initiating adult education in evening shift. Let them be actively associated with ‘sarva sikhsha abhiyan’ in real sense of the term. I am sure your appeal will matter.
As I have observed most of the rural schools are away from the habitation. Will it not be better if at least it is provided with at least residential facility for some teachers and students? Can’t other buildings in government plan of action such as ‘panchayat’ house or knowledge center be constructed in proximity? I am sure you must be planning to provide the facility of computer with Internet also in these schools. Let one teacher from the school get trained in computer on his own and once qualified be paid extra. Let him get a website for the school and help in online teaching that will be the solution to have equity in quality of teaching and education.
Please get one creativity center attached to each of these schools. It will not require very high investment.
Let the teachers of the rural schools be motivated to involve the students in yoga, sports and games seriously. If properly executed it will reduce the drop out problem almost in similar manner as the mid-day meal. The retired defence persons will be able to take up this assignment happily. (They can also be of help in manning he creativity center. Don’t you agree that even with the material available around the school from the fields, the students can learn about horticulture and floriculture or even making terracotta figurines? Will some paint and brushes be so costly that the school or the students can’t afford?)
Please appeal in all your ‘durbaar’ to the people from the rural Bihar to send their children to school and see that they continue education. Today, it has become very easy to make oneself employable. Just a good communication skill gets a pretty respectable job. And it is easy to master it with the digital equipment and readily available course materials even without teachers. Many Dalits have proven that. Some crooks are still exploiting people in rural area. It is necessary to communicate all the government offerings to them through various means.
I wish again if you can use the services of ‘Pratham’ to the best and outsource the inspection of the schools to it and thereby eliminate the department of school inspection.
Please make some fast track changes in education sector of the state. That can be the strength of the state and so its differential factor.