Maharashtra govt to divide textbooks, add blank pages to reduce schoolbag weight | Mint – Mint

  • Maharashtra school Education Minister Deepak Kesarkar, said his department is working to reduce the weight of bags of school children

A Maharashtra Minister on Monday said that the state education department is contemplating dividing textbooks in three parts and attaching blank pages for using them to take down notes as part of efforts to make schoolbags lighter. School Education Minister Deepak Kesarkar, said his department is working to reduce the weight of bags of schoolchildren. 
The Minister informed that the textbooks will be divided into three parts, but that will not bring down the weight of bags as notebooks will still have to be carried, he said, “we are contemplating that textbooks which we are dividing in three parts… if we add pages for writing and attach them to the textbook, then it will be very convenient. They (students) can refer to it and take notes and duplication will be avoided. This will help reduce the weight of bags.” The Minister further informed that the education department is in the process of taking a decision in this regard.
Meanwhile, in another development, the Delhi lieutenant governor’s office wrote to the chief secretary on Monday seeking explanation for the “decline in enrolment and rise in absenteeism” in government schools since 2014-15 despite an increase in expenditure on education. The letter came days after Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena flagged a delay by the AAP dispensation in acting on a Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) report on the construction of classrooms in Delhi government schools, according to PTI report.
The LG office has cited data from the Economic Survey 2021–2022 of the Delhi government detailing decline in enrolment of students in its schools and significant absenteeism of students despite the expenditure on education sector increasing from 6,145 crore in 2014-15 to 11,081 crore in 2019-20. Even as the per student per annum expenditure incurred by the government increased from 42,806 in 2015-16 to 66,593 in 2019-20, the number of students enrolled in Delhi government schools declined from 15.42 lakh in 2014-15 to 15.19 lakh in 2019-20, according to the letter.
“Despite substantial increase in investment in the education sector by the state government both in absolute terms and as part of the total budget, it is seen that during the same period, the enrolment in Delhi government schools declined from 15.42 lakh in 2014-15 to 15.19 lakh in 2019-20,” the letter read.
(With inputs from PTI)
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