Vidyanjali School Volunteer programme for co-scholastic activities: The Hon’ble Prime Minister during the review of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan in 2015 desired that the Ministry of Human Resource Development may explore the possibility of young professionals being encouraged to volunteer their services in Government schools.
The eligibility, qualifications, list of activities, duration of the programme, selection procedure, role of volunteer in schools for the “Vidyanjali – School Volunteer” programme are provided in this guidelines.
Govt of Telangana, School Education- Launching of “Vidyanjali”- A School Volunteer. Programme – Draft ‘Guidelines From Deputy Secretary, Govt. of India, MHRD, Dept., of School Education & Literacy, New Delhi.
Vidyanjali School Volunteer programme for co-scholastic activities: A copy of the reference cited along with its enclosure is sent herewith to the Director of School Education, Telangana, Hyderabad/ State Project Director, SSA, Telangana, Hyderabad. They are requested to take necessary action in the matter as desired in the reference cited.
The Ministry of Human Resource Development recognizes the unique place of volunteers in schools. School volunteers are mentors, confidantes and communicators. Vidyanjali is an initiative to enhance community and private sector involvement in Government run elementary schools across the country under the overall aegis of the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan. Through this initiative people from the Indian Diaspora, retired teachers, retired government officials including retired defence personnel, retired professionals and women who are home makers can volunteer at a school that requests for one.
Vidyanjali will also cover initiatives under the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Public Private Partnership (PPP), with Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) Companies, private corporate and others.
Vidyanjali Scheme Aim:
A very large number of people who are not part of the government have expressed a desire to give back to society and particularly to children in government schools. This includes retired government and other professionals, homemakers and also members of the Indian Diaspora and their children.
At the same time, there is a huge gap in the provisioning of educational services to children in government schools particularly for co-scholastic areas. This programme has been envisaged to bring together people willing to volunteer their services at schools which really need them. The aim of the programme is to strengthen implementation of co-scholastic activities in government schools through services of volunteers.
Background: As far as teaching in schools is concerned, the Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009 has stipulated clear guidelines on minimum qualifications to be laid down for persons to be appointed as teachers. In alignment with the provision of the RTE Act, 2009, the National Council for Teacher Education has laid down minimum qualifications for a person to be suitable to be a teacher at the elementary level in Government Schools. Additionally, the Centre and States organize the Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) which is mandatory for candidates to pass before they can be appointed as teachers. Therefore, the volunteers will not teach any subject in school or take regular class.
While the teachers in schools are responsible for all teaching-learning processes, a Volunteer at a school could enrich the teaching-learning process by conducting co-scholastic activities. The volunteers will, therefore, be engaged for co-scholastic activities and not be a replacement for the regular teachers and neither will they be involved in any kind of formal teaching.
Implementation of the programme
The programme will be piloted across 19 States which committed to doing so in the conference of State Ministers of Education held on 8th February 2016. These states are Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Goa, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Telangana, Tripura, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. It was decided there that the MHRD will develop detailed guidelines for the programme in consultation with MyGov.in and these will be shared with the States for their suggestions before it is piloted.
Requirements of a School
The programme will be implemented with children in elementary classes (Std. 1-8) of a government school. Schools that will participate in the pilot programme must meet the following requirements:
a. Have a full time Head Teacher for the school.
b. Have at least one female teacher in the entire school if it is a girls’ school or a co-ed school.
c. The School should have internet connectivity.
d. The School should have a safe and secure school building with functional toilets.
e. The school should have PTR as per the RTE norms.