Guwahati, Wednesday, February 17, 2010
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Computer education likely in State schools
Staff Reporter
 GUWAHATI, Feb 16 – To ensure uniform spread of computer literacy in all the government schools, the State government is mulling over a plan to introduce computer education as one of the optional subjects at high school level.

The plan, to be discussed with the Secondary Education Board of Assam (SEBA), also aims at optimum utilization of the fund spent under the Rajiv Gandhi Computer Literacy Programme (RGCLP) and the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) @ School programme, meant for widespread computer literacy at the school level.

Bringing both the schemes together, the State government today announced the launch of an integrated scheme upgrading the Union government initiative ICT@Schools scheme at par with the State government run RGCLP (phase V).

“Both the ambitious plans, now merged together, would update our students with the latest technology in the field of IT and create never before opportunities for them. But for that to happen, students and teachers must take computer education seriously. We would also consult with the SEBA to include computer education in the syllabus and make it compulsory by conducting examinations,” State Education Minister Gautam Bora said at the inaugural function of the scheme.

The ICT@Schools scheme has been introduced in 641 government high schools in Assam during the year 2009-10, whereas the RGCLP, launched in the State in February, 2004 is currently implemented in 969 government schools.

“The State government is already promoting computer education under the Rajiv Gandhi Computer Literacy Programme in the high and higher secondary schools. As the quantum of deliverables under the ICT@Schools scheme is not at par with the existing RGCPL scheme, the government has decided to incorporate all the infrastructure of RGCPL with the new scheme to ensure uniformity,” said Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi.

The project is being implemented in the State by AMTRON, the State nodal agency for information and technology.

The State IT Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, while speaking on the occasion, said that the headmasters and headmistresses of the school should ensure that all the students attend at least two computer classes in a week. “The infrastructure and additional manpower in form of computer teachers are being provided in the schools so that the students get the maximum benefits. All the efforts and money put in the project would be wasted if the students do not attend the classes properly,” he added.

Sarma also reiterated the State government’s decision to appoint 8,000 new teachers in the government schools this year before August.

“The new teachers, one each for Maths, Science and other subjects would be appointed completely on merit basis, not compromising with the future of our students,” he mentioned.

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