Eklavya Model Residential Schools Scheme (EMRS): All You Need to Know

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In recent news, it has been announced in the Budget 2023-24 that there will be a recruitment drive for 38,800 teachers and support staff for the 740 Eklavya Model Residential Schools across the country. These schools serve 3.5 lakh tribal students and the aim is to provide them with quality education and opportunities.

What is Eklavya Model Residential Schools Scheme

▪ The Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS) is a government initiative aimed at providing quality education to Scheduled Tribes students in remote tribal areas across India.

▪ This flagship program, which falls under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, was launched in 1997-98 and is funded through grants under Article 275(1) of the Indian Constitution.

The objective of the Scheme

▪ The scheme has a target of establishing Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS) in every block with over 50% ST population and at least 20,000 tribal persons by 2022, with a one-time grant of ₹30 lakh for setting up the school and up to ₹30 lakh per annum thereafter.

▪ The objective is to enable ST students from remote areas to access the best educational opportunities and bring them at par with the general population.

▪ It also focuses on the Comprehensive physical, mental, and socially relevant development of all students enrolled in each and every EMRS.

▪ Students will be empowered to be change agents, beginning in their school, in their homes, in their village, and finally in a larger context.

▪ Focus differentially on the educational support to be made available to those in Standards XI and XII, and those in standards VI to X, so that their distinctive needs can be met,

▪ Support the annual running expenses in a manner that offers reasonable remuneration to the staff and upkeep of the facilities.

▪ Support the construction of infrastructure that provides education, physical, environmental, and cultural needs of student life.

Number of EMRS

▪ The state governments bear the additional costs. As of the end of 2018, 284 EMRSs have been sanctioned, with Madhya Pradesh having the highest number of approvals at 32. Currently, 226 EMRSs are operational nationwide, with 68 affiliated with the CBSE.

School Establishment

▪ To set up the school complex, including hostels and staff quarters, the capital cost has been revised to Rs. 37.80 crores in plain areas and Rs. 48.00 crores in North East, hilly areas, and LWE-affected areas.

▪ States have also been advised to run schools in alternative buildings, preferably in Government Buildings until the construction of schools is completed.

▪ As of today, 690 schools have been sanctioned and 401 EMRSs have been made functional across the country with 113275 students enrolled.

Funding and Implementation

▪ Under the EMRS scheme, funds are released to an autonomous society, the National Education Society for Tribal Students (NESTS) for implementation.

▪ NESTS further releases funds to State Societies and Construction Agencies as per their requirements.

▪ Funds were being released to states under Grants under Article 275 (1) of the constitution until 2019-20.

▪ From 2020-21 onwards, a separate allocation has been made for the EMRS scheme.

Recruitment of Teachers and Support Staff

▪ In the Budget 2023-24, the Government announced the recruitment of 38,800 teachers and support staff for the 740 Eklavya Model Residential Schools, serving 3.5 lakh tribal students.

▪ National Education Society for Tribal Students (NESTS) has finalized the action plan and is taking further appropriate action to initiate the recruitment process in a phased manner.

Structure of EMRS

▪ 1. Admission to these schools will be through selection/competition with suitable provisions for preference to children belonging to Primitive Tribal Groups, first-generation students, etc.

▪ Sufficient land would be given by the State Government for the school, playgrounds, hostels, residential quarters, etc., free of cost.

▪ The number of seats for boys and girls will be equal.

▪ In these schools, education will be entirely free.

▪ Every class can have a maximum of 60 students preferably in 2 sections of 30 students each and the total sanctioned strength of the school will be 480 students.

▪ At the Higher Secondary level (class XI & XII), there will be three sections per class for the three streams in Science, Commerce & Humanities. The maximum sanctioned strength of each section may be 30 students. In case of a shortfall in a section, ST students from other schools may be admitted as per the procedure mentioned above (1).

Location of EMRS

EMRS Schools in Odisha:

▪ Thirteen EMRS schools have been functioning in Odisha since 2000 in three phases.

▪ The schools are located in Bhawanipur, Sundargarh; Dhanghera, Mayurbhanj; Pungar, Koraput; Kandhamal; Hirli, Nabarangpur; Siriguda, Rayagada; Gajapati; Ranki, Keonjhar; Laing, Sundargarh; Lahunipada, Sundargarh; Rampilo, Jajpur; Nuapada; and Malkangiri.

▪ These schools were established with funds from the Government of India and the State Government.

EMRS Schools in West Bengal:

▪ Seven EMRS schools are functioning in West Bengal.

▪ The districts where these schools are located are Bankura, Purulia, Burdwan, Paschim Medinipur, Jalpaiguri, Birbhum, and Dakshin Dinajpur.

▪ Two new EMRS schools were added in the academic year 2013-14 in Bolpur Santiniketan (Birbhum) and Buniadpur (Dakshin Dinajpur).

▪ These schools have a capacity of 420 students each and currently have a total of 2072 students.
Students admitted to these schools are provided with scholarships, free food, lodging, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is Eklavya’s model residential school?

    The Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS) is a government initiative aimed at providing quality education to Scheduled Tribes students in remote tribal areas across India.

  2. How many Eklavya Model schools are there in India?

    As of the end of 2018, 284 EMRSs have been sanctioned, with Madhya Pradesh having the highest number of approvals at 32.

  3. What is the concept of Eklavya model residential schools?

    This is a flagship program under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs aimed at establishing an Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS) in every block with a population of over 50% Scheduled Tribes and at least 20,000 tribal persons by 2022.

  4. Who are the beneficiaries of Eklavya Model Residential School?

    All the Scheduled Tribes students in remote tribal areas across India.

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