Planning and Appraisal
Planning and appraising in implementation of RMSA programme at the district and state levels is a challenging task. The challenge of planning secondary education under RMSA can be attributed to its unique features, including addressing the needs of children from a pluralist socio-economic, educational and cultural backgrounds and meeting their needs and aspirations to continue with higher education or entering the world of work. The challenge also lies in promoting complementarity among the approaches, interventions and resources of these schemes.
The RMSA envisages greater role for communities, panchayati raj institutions and other stake holders in all aspects of planning and implementation, leading to considerable devolution and decentralization of authority and management functions. Therefore, a very pragmatic approach is needed in development and appraisal of district and state level secondary education plans prepared under RMSA. Sufficient technical knowledge to deal with quantitative aspects and also to meaningfully address issues of quality is needed. It is a challenging task to build the capacity of the planning teams constituted at the state and district levels for planning and management of the secondary education in their respective areas under RMSA programme.
Planning and Appraisal Process
- Prioritization and Process Initiation: There is no defined timeline to initiate the planning process, but observations made by Joint Review Missions (JRMs) held in January and July every year, help to set most of the priorities for planning for the next year. The Five year Plan allocations and Union Budgets also drive the priority elements for planning. Based on these inputs, the TSG conducts regional workshops with different states seeking feedback in implementation, discussing appraisal process and planning priorities.
- Preparation of Plans: The state plan is generally prepared around the 10 chapters specified in the AWP&B Manual prepared by NUEPA. The work of the SPO and the District offices is to complete information spread across 60 odd tables needed to prepare the plan, requiring a focus on finalisation of UDISE data and compilation of information around information on civil works. Even though the cut-off date for school data (UDISE) is 30th September, the states continue updating the data till December. The writing of the district plans and their compilation in the state plan therefore takes place between December and March.
- Submission of plans, discussions with TSG and Pre-PAB and Final PAB approvals:Review of plans under RMSA is currently advised at two stages- at the state level and then at the national level. The state level review is conducted by the State Executive Committee of the RMSA, while the Project Approval Board (PAB) is the final forum at the national level where state plans are discussed, appraised and approved. The dates for PAB are announced well in advance and generally 3-4 states are covered on one PAB day. All other activities like pre-PAB meetings, TSG discussions, resubmissions are planned accordingly.