Bhubaneswar: Orissa, which has the second highest tribal population in the country, will start high-tech coaching progammes from next month exclusively for its tribal students to help them compete in tough competitive examinations.
The state government plans to enrol about 1,000-1,500 students of Class 10 and 11 from 19 state-run tribal schools located in the interior areas for the programme. Sanjeev K Chadha, director of the state Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Welfare Department, said tribal students who are not enrolled in tribal schools would also be given the training later.
"Two special classrooms would be set up in government-run higher secondary tribal schools as most of the schools are primarily residential. The schools will be equipped with computers, projectors and liquid crystal display (LCD) boards," Chadha said.
Students will be provided around 300 hours of coaching by high-quality teachers and instructors, physically or through online and video conferencing. The programme will cost about Rs 3 crore every year, Chadha said, adding that the coaching sessions will include in-depth coverage of all the concepts of physics, chemistry and mathematics.
The project will help students to look beyond industrial training institutes and encourage them to appear in competitive examinations.
The students would be prepared for examinations like the All India Engineering Entrance Examination, (AIEEE), Orissa Joint Entrance Examination (OJEE) and the Indian Institute of Technology-Joint Entrance Examination (IIT-JEE), he said.
"We have already issued a tender to find out a good engineering coaching institute that would provide us the study material. We are likely to finalise this within the next few days," he said.
"Since the Classes 10 and 11 are located mostly in interior areas and primarily residential, satellite technology will be used to train the students," said Chadha.
Orissa has the second biggest tribal population in the country. The state has a population of over 36 million, of which more than eight million are tribals, according to the 2001 census. The Scheduled Tribe population is 22.13 percent of the state`s total population.
The percentage of literacy among the Scheduled Tribes is 37.37 against the general literacy level of 63.8 percent . When it comes to functional literacy, the percentage is even lower.
The SC/ST Welfare Department will identify students who have the necessary academic background and basic ideas of Class 10-level physics, chemistry and mathematics, he said.
The department will assess the instructors for each school, a minimum of one instructor each for physics, chemistry and mathematics, he said.
The instructors will be assessed for their ability to facilitate classroom coaching and clear the doubts of students on the subjects, he said.