The future of meritorious students of scheduled castes will be nurtured by ‘SHRESHTA’
Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Dr Virendra Kumar will launch Scheme for Residential Education For Students in High schools in Targeted Areas (SHRESHTA) tomorrow.
The Scheme for Residential Education for Students in Targeted Areas (SHRESHTA) has been formulated with the objective to provide quality education and opportunities for even the poorest Scheduled Caste students, as per the Constitutional mandate. The students from the Scheduled Caste communities, for long been subjects to inequality, were kept out of quality education and a situation that perpetuates the disadvantages carried forward for generations of lack of adequate education.
The Governmental efforts to spread educational facilities without discrimination have worked well in achieving near-universal access. However, the objective of providing access to quality education that provides a level playing field is still far from reality. The scheme for Residential Education for Students in High Schools in Targeted Areas (SHRESHTA) has been conceived to provide access to high-quality residential education to the meritorious poor students from Scheduled Caste communities, whose parental annual income is up to Rs. 2.5 Lakh per annum, free of cost from class 9th to class 12th
2. Under this, each year a specified number of meritorious SC students (Approx 3000) in States / UTs are selected through a transparent mechanism of a National Entrance Test for SHRESHTA (NETS), conducted by the National Testing Agency ( NTA ). Selected students are admitted to the Best Private Residential Schools, affiliated with CBSE, in classes 9th and 11th for completion of education till 12th standard.
3. Thereafter, the students may be connected to the Post Metric Scholarship Scheme or Top-Class Education Scheme of the Ministry to continue their further studies with adequate financial aid from the Government of India.
4. For the selection of Schools, the Ministry through a committee with the representative of the Ministry of Education and CBSE and Finance Division of the Department, has selected the best performing private residential schools affiliated with the CBSE, based on certain parameters such as ( i ) Schools is in existence for at least for last 5 years, ( ii ) Boards results of the schools were more than 75 % in Class 10 and 12 for the last 3 years, and ( iii ) the Schools have adequate infrastructure for admitting additional at SC students in classes 9th and 11th.
5. For ensuring the quality of students in the scheme, the Department has decided to seek the students based on the All India Entrance Examination from the National Testing Agency ( NTA ), which conducts all major exams including JEE / NEET and selection of employees for the Government through SSC and others. Selected Students under the scheme are offered the best private residential schools across the country to pursue their academics further, as per their choice through the e – Counseling process by NIC and NTA. Two rounds of e Counseling have been mandated for the students to get admission to the CBSE affiliated Private residential schools of their choice.
Ministry has executed a Memorandum of Understanding with the NIC and NICSI for the scheme. To avoid any hardship to the selected students in the Scheme and to facilitate the Schools, provisions for payment of full-year fees including hostel fees in one go have been incorporated in the scheme through the simplest method and without documentation that the selected schools will register themselves on Anudaan portal and will submit their fee claim in respect of the SHRESHTA Students. Required documents of the students shall be taken on e – Anudaan portal through the integration of the NTA portal with the e – Anudaan portal.
6. The Ministry intends to provide a level playing field to the poor and meritorious SC students, by providing facilities for providing High-Quality Education in the CBSE based Private Schools having a Residential Facility ( Hostel ) from classes 9th to 12th. The entire cost of school fees and hostel fees including food charges shall be borne by the Government of India. The Students under the Scheme may select any school across the country for their academics.
7. Provisions have also been incorporated in the scheme for a Bridge Course for a period of 3 months, for the students, joining the CBSE based schools from State Schools, Rural Areas or Regional language Schools, to adapt to the new environment of the selected schools. The bridge course should be conducted outside – the – school – hours after identifying the individual academic requirements, to ensure that SC students of the Scheme, can catch up with the rest of the students in the class. The Ministry shall pay the additional cost of 10 % of the annual charge for the Bridge Course.
8. The scholarships for the students will cover the School Fee (including tuition fee ) and Hostel Fee ( including mess charges ) subject to a maximum limit as given below:
|Class||Scholarship per student per annum (Rs)|
9. The scholarships will be released in one instalment directly to the schools in the first quarter itself of each financial year. The progress of the students will be monitored by the Ministry from time to time. The scheme will be considered to be in DBT mode.
Disclaimer : This is an official press release by PIB.