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WB: State project to improve government schools through cluster approach

April 29, 2023

Mita Mukherjee

The Bengal government has identified 60 government schools of high academic standards which will provide leadership to neighbourhood schools and share best practices and infrastructure facilities with them for their improvement.

The 60 selected “hub schools” spread across six districts will not only share their infrastructure facilities and human resources but they will also help the upgrade of the “Spoke schools” under them through collaborative learning, by improving efficiency of teachers and offering necessary assistance for better governance and school administration, according to the guidelines released by the state school education department for implementing the project.

The concept, ” Hubs of Learning” through “Centre of Excellence” based on the principles of cluster approach has been designed to promote the idea of peer-learning and mentorship.

The project was launched in six districts on April 25, but it will be gradually implemented across the state, a senior official of the school education department said.

The six districts where the initiative has been launched are South 24 Parganas, North 24 Parganas, Cooch Behar, Bankura, Malda and Kolkata.

For selecting the mentor schools certain criteria were taken into consideration, the official said. Schools which are reputable ones record high performance of students in the board and internal exams, have high quality infrastructure like modern classrooms, library with good collection of books, well-equipped laboratories and e-learning facilities have been selected as the mentor schools.

Each of the “hub school ” will mentor eight to 10 “spoke” schools.

The schools which will avail of the mentorship will also be selected on the basis of certain criteria, most importantly the performance level of their students.

” Many of the state-aided schools are very reputable ones and also in demand among parents for their high academic standards and high standard facilities. Such schools which have achieved excellence have been selected as mentor schools,” said an official overseeing the scheme.

There are many schools which do not have very high standard facilities but the academic performance of their students are higher than many other schools. This category which do not have the facilities but have the potential to excel will be provided the mentorship by the hub schools,” the official said.

The schools to be covered under the project are preferrably those which run till Class XII.

The mentor school will have to complete the upgrade programme for the “spoke ” schools within two years.

The local district administrations have been empowered to select the schools and monitor the progress of the project.

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