The government had come under widespread criticism for failing to release funds for maintenance of schools even as the northeast monsoon was about to hit the state.
According to a circular issued by the School education department, while an amount of Rs 80.53 crore is sanctioned for primary and middle schools, the amount sanctioned for maintenance work in higher secondary schools is Rs 38.74 crore.
The schools are required to display the amount sanctioned in the notice board of their schools and the fund has to be utilised within December 31, 2022. The schools can use this fund for their maintenance, sanitation, procuring school essentials, and also small repairs.
Besides, the schools can also use these funds for paying electricity and internet bills, for betterment of drinking water facilities in the schools, and purchasing new teaching aids and materials.
In its circular, the school education department has directed the schools to mandatorily allocate 10 per cent of the money sanctioned for improving sanitation in the schools and also to spread awareness among students on sanitation. The school education department wants the schools concerned to conduct awareness on sanitation once a week.
The circular also directed the schools to upload the details of the expenditure on the Educational Management and Information System software of the school education department so that no appropriation of funds takes place.
A high school headmaster from Tiruchi district in Tamil Nadu, while speaking to IANS on condition of anonymity, said, “It is not possible to complete the maintenance before December 31 as rains have already commenced. I hope that the school education department will give more time for this work.”
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