Education is an important sector wherein India needs to grow drastically and effectively. The government keeps making efforts time and again yet not much has changed on the ground level. There is still need for more schools and better teaching staff to deliver education to each and every child in India. It is important for each one of us to make effort on our behalf so that this situation can be tackled well. Recently an IAS officer in Meghalaya named Swapnil Tembe, has taken up a wonderful initiative. Shri Tembe who is serving as the sub-divisional officer (SDO) of Dadenggre civil subdivision, in the remote West Garo Hills district of Meghalaya, believes that education is the core of our lives and imparting quality education is of immense importance. He stated that when he joined as SDO (Civil) Dadenggre, my ultimate focus was on the government schools.
I wanted to get deep into the system and understand that how the government schools work and where exactly they lack. Upon inspection of various schools he found that the condition of the government schools is not very sound. The government-run lower primary (LP) units were the biggest sufferers. The scenario was such that the students from all the classes were made to sit and study in one single room. The total absence of aesthetics and ambience. It only for the sake of formality that the school is being run. Although as we know that government schools all over India are in a pathetic condition but the situation is even worse in the northeastern hilly areas. In the north eastern regions the population is usually scattered. Also, the students who go to school in these areas are usually first generation of learners, their parents are uneducated. He highlighted that Project Star has been initiated which aims at improving the infrastructure of these schools. Project Star collects resources through crowdfunding and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives. Several officers from different departments are also made part of this initiative in order to undertake counselling sessions in schools. This they do on a voluntary basis. Project STAR has several dimensions such as counselling, infrastructure improvement, teacher training, etc., being one responsible officer of India, Tembe has decided to adopt in the Songadingre Lower Primary School in Dadenggre sub-division. Presently the school has around 30 students, 2 teachers and only 2 classrooms. He stated that he got motivation to take up this initiative from Honorable CM Shri Conrad Sangma, who donated a month’s salary to renovate a school in Nongstoin. Resultantly, IAS Tembe decided to donate his 2 months salary amounting to Rs. 1.5 lacs. He also organised a crowdfunding campaign on Milaap, where his administration collected a little over Rs 2 lakh. In a short period of just 10 days, the crowdfunding campaign achieved its stated goal. He informed that these funds will be utilised in improving the school’s infrastructure and its facilities. He has made a request to everyone to adopt one school near them. This shall indeed bring about a great effect on a larger scale.
By: Anuja Arora