For promoting literacy, open schooling introduced in JK
Jammu gives a far better response than Kashmir division, say officials
Srinagar: The J&K School Education Department has started state open schooling (SoS) to arrest the school dropout rate and also enroll those adults who have left schools after class 8th.
The initiative was launched few years ago and the first batch was enrolled in years 2014 in Jammu as well as Kashmir region.
“At earlier stage, we got poor response from the candidates due to which the enrollment was very less in the accredited centres established in government higher secondary schools. The department utilizes services of in-service teachers of the concerned schools to take classes under SoS programme,” an official said.
The initiative is run by JK Board of School Education (BOSE) for which the government has set up accredited study centres in 38 higher secondary schools (HSS) of the state including two each in Ladakh and Kargil district.
“This SoS is proving beneficial for school drop outs as well government officials who were recruited in various departments during past decades and are demanding promotions to higher level,” said Assistant Director Academic JK BOSE.
He said they have adopted curriculum and text books from National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) for students enrolling under SoS system of schooling.
“The classes are held on pattern of IGNOU. The enrolled candidates attend their classes on Sundays in the designated centres,” the official said, adding that under SoS BOSE provides sustainable education up to class 12th through open and distance learning (ODL) mode.
He said the open learning system will open up opportunities to the school dropouts, older persons, failures, women, unemployed, downtrodden people and differently abled children to ensure social justice by democratizing education.
“We are still receiving lukewarm response from Kashmir because people here believe that open schooling was appearing in exams with open books,” he said, adding that they had 725 candidates enrolled from Jammu last year while as only 200 from Kashmir.
“The new session will start from coming months,” he said. The JK SoS has been launched to achieve 100 percent literacy in the state. The candidates above the age of 14 years who have passed class 8th exams are eligible for SoS system of education.