Conrad Sangma: Meghalaya spends 15 percent of their budget on education annually

Conrad Sangma: Meghalaya spends 15 percent of their budget on education annually

Shillong, Sep 27: Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma on Tuesday said that the government spends a little over fifteen percent of the State’s budget on education every year.

The Chief Minister said this while addressing a gathering of academicians and students at a function to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of Mawsynram Border Area College at Mawsynram, East Khasi Hills.

Sangma added that the government, despite the numerous challenges in the education sector, is committed to improve the overall education scenario in the State.

“Education has been an area where, as a government, we have focused a lot. It is one of the most challenging sectors. It is not easy for the government to try and resolve all issues in a short span of time. But we have taken up the challenge and working towards improving education through the various interventions – whether it is the education policy, whether it is the investment in Government school buildings, whether it is the opening up of People’s College, whether it is the different support that we give towards infrastructure even to private schools and colleges’, he said.

According to him a large amount of investment and a lot of thought processes has gone into improving the education structure.

The Chief Minister said that education is one of the most important as well as the most complicated sectors.

“Out of the Rs.16,000 crore of budget that Meghalaya government spends every year, more than Rs. 2500 crore is spent for the running expenditure of different schools, colleges and over and above that, other infrastructure investments are made every year. So clearly from the government side, the kind of importance that is given to education can be seen by the amount of budget that we spend on education’, the Chief Minister added.

He also said that while the Government has embarked on a determined effort, all stakeholders have an equal responsibility to see that education improves in the State.

“There are a large number of stakeholders in the education sector, there is of course the Government which includes the political leadership and the officials, we have the teacher community, we have the society in general, we have the parents with whom children spend most of the time at home. Each of these different sections of society has a role to play to make education improve in the short, medium term, and the long term’, he said.

The Chief Minister also said that the Government is also exploring the best possible way to upscale higher education in the rural areas through various interventions either by creating new infrastructure or by increasing the capacity of the higher educational institutes in rural areas to handle increased student intake.

‘If we look at the concentration of colleges you will see a large number of them in Shillong or Tura and other district quarters. And hence the youth living in the rural areas have less opportunity to get enrolled in higher studies due to the lesser number of institutions in rural areas. The Government is working earnestly to change this and to ensure that our students don’t miss out on the opportunity for higher learning’, the Chief Minister said.