Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala has been hit badly after the centre integrated three educational schemes into one and reduced the funding for it recently. The three schemes, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and Scheme of Restructuring and Reorganisation of Teacher Education (STE), were merged to form a single project called Samagra Siksha Abhiyan.
The centrally-sponsored schemes have been in operation for about 15 years for improving the quality of education and infrastructure in government schools at elementary (classes 1 to 8) and secondary (classes 9 and 10) levels and improving teacher education programmes. These were replaced by a new integrated programme for classes 1 to 12 and for improving teacher education. The total allocation for Kerala has been fixed at Rs 720 crore, while Rs 640 crore was given for RMSA alone last year. Only Goa has a lesser allocation than Kerala among states. Of the total amount, Rs 413.43 crore will be central share.
The fund-sharing pattern between the centre and states has been retained in the ratio of 60:40. Kerala was allotted lower funds on the ground that the state had already achieved many of the first generation challenges. These included ensuring gender parity index at the elementary and secondary levels and adequate number of classrooms.
Uttar Pradesh received central funds of around Rs 4,900 crore, Bihar Rs 2,954 crore, Uttarakhand Rs 1,139 crore, Tamil Nadu Rs 1,427 crore and Karnataka Rs 926 crore. SSA state project director A.P. Kuttykrishnan told DC that the funds were allotted based on the work plan and budget placed before the project approval board in New Delhi. The final figures would be available only within a few days, he said. Sources said that the state had sought around Rs 1,400 crore for proposals that included steps to take forward the state's initiative.