After receiving no response from the Odisha government regarding the Centre’s PM SHRI scheme, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan urged Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday to instruct the relevant officers to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Centre for the establishment of such schools in the state.
The PM SHRI scheme, initiated on September 7, 2022, aims to establish more than 14,500 schools across the country. These schools are designed to incorporate all components of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 and provide high-quality education in an equitable, inclusive, and joyful environment.
Pradhan, in a letter to the chief minister, mentioned that most schools and Union Territories (UT) have already signed MoUs, and the first phase of school selection has been completed, with the first installment released to implement the PM SHRI schools scheme. Despite multiple letters to the state on March 13, 2023, and October 9, 2023, Odisha has not yet signed the Memorandum of Understanding.
In his letter to the CM, Pradhan requested necessary directions to be issued to the concerned officers for signing the MoU for the PM SHRI scheme with the Department of School Education & Literacy (DoSEL), Ministry of Education (MoE).
Pradhan emphasized that these schools will not only focus on cognitive development but also aim to create holistic individuals equipped with key 21st-century skills. The PM SHRI schools are expected to provide better science labs, libraries, ICT (information and communication technology) facilities, and vocational labs. Additionally, they will be developed as Green Schools, incorporating features like solar panels, LED lights, and water harvesting and conservation facilities.