Play a role in inclusive education, Sibal tells private sector


New Delhi : The private sector must play a major rule in inclusive education, Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal said while suggesting a slew of innovative measures to encourage the sector to provide education to the less privileged.

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Government schools premises, he said, could be given to the private sector for conducting evening classes with 50 percent students from less privileged sections.

“Municipal and government schools can be given to the business class after school hours. You can run skill development centres or evening schools,” Sibal said Monday while delivering the 38th Shri Ram memorial lecture here.

“Take 50 percent students from the less privileged class, government can pay their expense. Rest 50 percent can pay their fee,” Sibal said.

Other government buildings and offices which were free in the second half could also be used, he suggested.

“Let the buildings be used for a constructive purpose, not for marriage and parties,” he said in a reference to the widespread practice of using government schools and buildings for conducting marriages and other functions.

Describing human resource development as the most important factor for sustaining economic growth, Sibal said 70 percent of the working population was under qualified with no primary education.

The minister stressed on inclusive education, calling upon the private sector to play a major role in the process.

“Government has planned 6,500 model schools, of these 3,000 are to be made on the public private partnership (PPP) model,” he said, asking the private sector to contribute in building infrastructure.

“We will provide the land and you (private sector) build the schools. Take half students from economically backward class, we will pay their fees,” Sibal said. “The contribution from the private sector will be the building, and you can incur the cost through the fee you take from the students from sound economic backgrounds.”

Sibal also discussed the need for providing residential schools to stop street children and child labour from going back to work.

“Once the right to education is implemented, in the next eight years, every class will have at least 25 percent students from economically backward sections. I hope by then we will have a legislation to give reservation beyond that level,” Sibal said.