Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) is Government of India’s flagship programme for achievement of Universalization of Elementary Education (UEE) in a time bound manner, as mandated by 86th amendment to the Constitution of India making free and compulsory Education to the Children of 6-14 years age group, a Fundamental Right.

SSA is being implemented in partnership with State Governments to cover the entire country and address the needs of 192 million children in 1.1 million habitations.
The programme seeks to open new schools in those habitations which do not have schooling facilities and strengthen existing school infrastructure through provision of additional class rooms, toilets, drinking water, maintenance grant and school improvement grants.

Existing schools with inadequate teacher strength are provided with additional teachers, while the capacity of existing teachers is being strengthened by extensive training, grants for developing teaching-learning materials and strengthening of the academic support structure at a cluster, block and district level.

SSA seeks to provide quality elementary education including life skills. SSA has a special focus on girl’s education and children with special needs. SSA also seeks to provide computer education to bridge the digital divide.

Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan

This scheme was launched in March, 2009 with the objective to enhance access to secondary education and to improve its quality. The implementation of the scheme started from 2009-10. It is envisaged to achieve an enrolment rate of 75% from 52.26% in 2005-06 at secondary stage within 5 years of implementation of the scheme by providing a secondary school within a reasonable distance of any habitation. The other objectives include improving quality of education imparted at secondary level through making all secondary schools conform to prescribed norms, removing gender, socio-economic and disability barriers, providing universal access to secondary level education by 2017, i.e., by the end of 12th Five Year Plan and achieving universal retention by 2020.

Important physical facilities provided under the scheme are:

  • Additional class rooms,
  • Laboratories,
  • Libraries,
  • Art and crafts room,
  • Toilet blocks,
  • Drinking water provisions and
  • Residential Hostels for Teachers in remote areas.

Important quality interventions provided under the scheme are:

  • Appointment of additional teachers to reduce PTR to 30:1,
  • Focus on Science, Math and English education,
  • In-service training of teachers,
  • Science laboratories,
  • ICT enabled education,
  • curriculum reforms; and
  • Teaching learning reforms.

Important equity interventions provided in the scheme are:

  • Special focus in micro planning
  • Preference to Ashram schools for upgradation
  • Preference to areas with concentration of SC/ST/Minority for opening of schools
  • Special enrolment drive for the weaker section
  • More female teachers in schools; and
  • Separate toilet blocks for girls.

Implementation mechanism of the Scheme
The scheme is being implemented by the State government societies established for implementation of the scheme. The central share is released to the implementing agency directly. The applicable State share is also released to the implementing agency by the respective State Governments.

Financial and Physical Progress Under the Scheme
During the 11th Five Year Plan, the Central Government bore 75% of the project expenditure during the 11th Plan, with the remaining 25% being borne by State Governments. However, funding pattern was 90:10 for North Eastern States.

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