Arun Jaitley, the Finance Minister of the Narendra Modi led government read out the Union Budget for 2014-15 on 10th July 2014.
The highlights of the Budget regarding the education sector are:
- Allocation for higher education is up by nearly 13% from the allocated in 2013 and for school education it is nearly up by 10%.
- The total budget of Ministry of Human Resources development has seen an increase of 12.3% from last year.
- The government has allocated Rs. 28,635 crore for Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan, Mid-day meal has been allocated Rs. 13,215 crore and Rs. 4,966 crore for Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA).
- There is an increase in the allocation of teacher training and education. Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya New Teacher’s Training Programme is being launched with an initial allocation of Rs. 500 crore. The focus of the programme will be to train students who wish to pursue career in teaching.
- ‘School Assessment Programme’ is also a new initiative. It is being initiated at the cost of Rs. 30 crore. The assessment will take into account parameters such as levels of student learning outcomes.
- Although no specific monetary allocations have been made for reducing the gaps in school infrastructure, the government has made it clear that provisions of toilets and drinking water will be a priority.
- Rs.100 crore has been set aside for setting up of virtual classrooms Communication Linked Interface for Cultivating Knowledge and online courses.
- Rs. 100 crore has been provided for madarsa modernisation. This a move to improve elementary education segment.This is aimed at enabling 10 lakh Muslim children get education of national standards which is certified through the National Institute of Open Schooling.
- Five IITs- in Jammu, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala and Five IIMs- in Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Bihar, Orissa and Maharashtra, to be set up. Rs. 500 crore has been set aside for the same.
- The budget proposes to set up Jai Prakash Narayan National Centre for Excellence in Humanities in Madhya Pradesh.
- It has also been proposed to build four new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS).