The Ministry of Tribal Affairs has been implementing a number of interventions to improve the educational status of the tribals:-
I. Ashram Schools: Funds are provided to States for making residential schools for STs for primary, middle, secondary and senior secondary level of education.
II. ST Hostels: Central assistance is given to States/UTs/Universities for construction of new hostel buildings and/or extension of existing hostels.
III. Scheme of strengthening education among ST Girls in Low Literacy Districts: 100% assistance is given for running and maintenance of educational complexes for ST girls.
IV. Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRSs): EMRS are set up with capacity of 480 students per school under grants in aid under Article 275(1) of the Constitution to States, to provide quality middle and high level education to ST students.
V. This Ministry also provides Post-Matric Scholarship for ST Students and Pre-Matric Scholarship for ST students studying in classes IX & X.
VI. As per Ministry of Tribal Affairs’ Special Central Assistance to Tribal Sub-Plan (SCA to TSP) Guidelines, and Guidelines for Article 275 (1) of the Constitution, in intra-State (sectoral activities, community, area-wise) prioritization and allocation, 40% to 50% of funds must be allocated for education in States / UTs.
VII. Funds are provided for recurring expenses for Residential Schools and Non-Residential Schools to Voluntary Agencies.
VIII. Ministry of Tribal Affairs has issued advisories to States for a series of measures to address issues of dropout, and for continuing education of tribal children including: development of Bilingual Primers containing text both in regional and tribal language but in local official script, school vacation to be in synchronization with major tribal festivals; residential schools (200-300 students capacity) in block headquarters for quality education and physical safety, school management to engage teachers to overcome shortage, 100% screening of children for Sickle Cell Anemia/Trait, 100% physical enrolment of children.
Apart from these, Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) is implementing various schemes like Sarva Shikhsa Abhiyan, Mid-Day Meals, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan, Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha AbhiyanKasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBVs). The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), provides for free and compulsory elementary education to all children in the age group of 6 to 14 years including ST children. 109 special focus districts have been identified on the basis of the indicators like out of school children, high gender gap, low retention rate and infrastructure gap as well concentration of Scheduled Tribe population. Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBVs) scheme provides for residential schools for girls at upper primary level; a minimum of 75% seats are for minority, SC, ST and OBC girls. KGBVs cover 69% ST girls in ST Special Focus Districts.
Further, MHRD has made the following expenditure under the ST Component during the last 3 years:
(Rs. in Crore)
Department of Higher Education
Department of School Education & Literacy
The schemes/ programmes are implemented for socio-economic development of tribals in the country, including tribal women. The schemes are demand driven. The beneficiaries are selected by the State concerned. Gender disaggregated data of funds/ beneficiaries are not maintained centrally. States have been emphasized in Project Appraisal Committee Meetings that one third beneficiaries should be women / girls. Scheme of Strengthening of Education in low literacy Districts is meant for girls only. Further under the guidelines of Eklavya Model Residential Schools, it is specified that the number of seats for girls and boys will be equal.
This information was given by Union Minister of State for Tribal Affairs Shri Jaswantsinh Bhabhor in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.