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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Whether a school can buy library books under SSA?

Books have been brought earlier under various programmes like Operation Blackboard, DPEP, etc.  Some schools have also bought through local sources.  The school grant of Rs. 2000/- under SSA may be used for buying books so as to replace books already acquired from other sources.  New schools approved under SSA may also buy books through the TLE grants of Rs. 10000/- and Rs. 50000/-given for Primary and Upper Primary Schools respectively.

Whether the limit of Rs. 70/- per day person for teacher training can be increased in light of higher TA/DA rates?

Teacher training under SSA is expected to be held at the BRC/CRC level and so the question of higher expenditure due to high TA/DA should not arise.  Hence, the States should, to the maximum extent possible, arrange these trainings at the BRC level or CRC level so as to keep the expenses with Rs. 70/- per day person.  Any excess expenditure above this Rs. 70/- limit may be met from the management head, without exceeding the 6% limit fixed for management cost under SSA.

What is the provision under SSA for printing & distribution of training modules and teacherís guides?

Cost of development of training modules and teacherís guides should within the overall training cost of Rs. 70/- per teacher per day.  Since the development costs are one time costs, the expenditure on these may be distributed over the number of teachers who are likely to benefit from these modules/guides.  

Whether the State procurement procedure has to be necessarily followed, even when the society has the alternative procedure applicable for the DPEP which it has been following?

It had been clarified earlier that  procurement under SSA has to be done as per the respective State procedure/rules.  It had also been clarified that in case of specific donor requirement, the donor agency guidelines would be followed.  However, in case the society is already following a procedure under DPEP the same can be adopted by it for procurement under SSA also.  The choice of the procedure i.e. whether State guidelines or the existing DPEP procedures, may be decided by the Executive Committee of the State Implementation Society.  This choice may be exercised by EC either for the entire procurement to be done by the Society in toto or for each procurement on a case to case basis.

What should be the approved rates for unconventional items of civil works construction which are not available in the PWD/state schedule of rates?

It has been clarified earlier that the unit cost under SSA should be as pe the PWD/state schedule of rates.  However, a lot of innovative and unconventional designs are being used for construction, which do not form part of schedule of rates. Hence, it is further clarified that for all items for which there is a prescribed schedule of rates in the State, the estimates should not be more than that provided in the schedule of rates.  In case of unconventional items, which do not form part of schedule of rates, the rates should be approved by the Executive Committee of the State Implementation Society, with the condition that such estimates should not exceed the cost of a similar design made through conventional items available in the schedule of rates. (e.g. a rat trap bond wall should not exceed the cost of brick wall as per schedule of rates or unit rate of RCC work in filler slab should not exceed the unit rate of RCC work in slab as provided in schedule of rate).

What assistance is available to madarsas and to children studying in madarsas in SSA?

It is clarified that such of the madarsas which are affiliated to the Secondary School Board of the State/Madarsa Board of the State and following the State Board curriculum etc. would be entitled to assistance to other regular schools as per SSA norms.

A large number of children, especially girls, are found studying in other madarsas not covered under the above paragraph.  For this purpose, an EGS centre or an AIE intervention may be started at the madarsas by the local body concerned/community based organization, whereby free textbooks, an additional teacher if required and training to the teacher in the State Curriculum can be imparted.  Such interventions shall be planned for and written into the perspective and annual plans of SSA developed by the district and State Societies.

What should be the district for the purpose of preparation of DEEP? That is whether the revenue district or the educational district should be taken as the unit for planning at the district level? 

Revenue district should be taken as the unit of planning at the district level. The number of revenue districts is frozen as on 31/3/2002 , and no further bifurcation would be taken into account for planning. Plans of districts bifurcated subsequently would be included in the original unbifurcated district.

What norms should be followed in creation of posts, other than that of teachers? 

While sanctioning new non-teacher posts following points may be kept in consideration:

  1. No new permanent posts should be created.

  2. While examining the need of new posts, the feasibility of using the human resources available in the present administrative structure - both the mainline education department and DPEP - should be explored first. If any of the activities cannot be done with the present set up, only then recourse should be made to new posts.

  3. The posts being created should be filled only through contract or through deputation. No permanent liability should accrue on the society due to filling up of these posts. 

  4. No deputation allowance will be allowed for posts filled through deputation.

  5. The total management cost should be less than 6% of the total cost, separately for each district and also in total for the entire State.

Whether personnel can be posted for supervision of civil works?

Personnel can be posted at various levels for civil works supervision, subject to the guidelines mentioned in FAQ No. 2.

Whether repairs can be done for classrooms beyond Rs 5000/- per school?

SSA would fund only upto Rs 5000/- per school per annum for maintenance and repair. However, repairs beyond Rs 5000/- can always be taken up by sourcing other funds such as community contribution, Panchayat Funds, State Government funds, Centrally sponsored schemes, etc.

What should be the unit cost of civil works in cases where SSA norms are silent?

The unit cost, where not specifically mentioned in the SSA norms, would depend on the PWD norms of the State. However, in cases where the unit costs are abnormally high, the estimates would be looked into by the Technical Support Group of SSA at the National Level for its recommendations. In case of drinking water facilities and toilets, the PAB has fixed an upper limit of Rs 15000/- and Rs 20000/- respectively. Any additional expenditure for these two items would have to be met by the State through other sources.

Whether child friendly elements are permitted in schools under SSA?

Permanent civil works based child-friendly elements can be provided in the new school buildings sanctioned under SSA, provided they are built in to the unit cost of the school building.

Whether boundary walls are permitted under SSA?

Boundary Walls would be permitted only in extreme cases like hilly terrain, forest areas or urban areas. In other cases boundary walls from SSA funds would not be encouraged.

Whether ECCE facilities or EGS centres can be constructed under SSA?

ECCE facilities or EGS centres cannot be constructed under SSA.

Whether the 5% limit on cost of construction of BRCs/CRCs is within the 33% civil works limit or over and above the civil works limit?

The 33% limit on civil works includes expenditure on construction of BRCs and CRCs. Within this overall limit there is a sub-limit of 5% of total annual projected expenditure on construction of BRCs and CRCs.

Whether ceiling of Rs 6 lakhs for BRC construction and Rs 2 lakhs for CRC construction continue till 2010?

Yes, as per current approvals. However, it is also expected that BRCs and CRCs would be constructed in the initial years of the programme.

Whether civil works plan should have details of funds accessed from other sources?

The Plans should make a realistic analysis of funds available for school infrastructure improvement. While exact amount available under schemes, other than SSA, may not be known, an assessment should be made of items of work which could be taken up under other schemes and only the balance should be proposed for funding under SSA. It may be possible for the District to come to a conclusion that only limited funding or no funding is available from other schemes but this should be clearly brought out in the plans or in subsequent documentation.

Whether residential schools can be constructed under civil works?

Hostels cannot be taken up under civil works as part of school facility. However, residential schools as a complete package can be taken up under the innovative scheme.

Whether equipment for monitoring quality of construction can be purchased and training of supervisory teams for civil works monitoring can be taken up?

The unit cost for each construction should have a supervision component. If any equipment is to be bought, it should be bought from this provision. The supervision cost built into the unit cost can be retained at the District/State level for expenditure on supervision. Training of supervisory staff can be budgeted under the management cost.

While expenditure on civil works is limited to 33% of the perspective plan outlay, districts have been permitted to go up to 40% of annual outlay each year provided the total expenditure does not exceed 33% of the approved perspective outlay. Whether this perspective outlay should be the outlay till 2010 or till 2007.

Since the districts have been asked to prepare the financial component of the perspective plan only till 2007 (even though the physical component would be till 2010), the 33% limit would be taken as that of the approved financial outlay till 2007. Thus, the annual plans can go upto 40% of the annual outlay, provided the perspective plan has been approved and the total expenditure does not exceed 33% of the approved outlay till 2007.

Whether SIEMAT or BRC construction needs to be done by the community?

Since SIEMAT is a State level construction, it need not be done by the community. The State may follow the PWD regulations or other regulations applicable to the Education Department of the State for construction of office buildings. Regarding BRCs, which are block-level structures, the concerned State Government may decide between community construction or construction through a State agency such as PWD.

Whether salary of the teachers recruited under SSA is only for a ten-year period?

As per the SSA norms, the sharing pattern under SSA between the Centre and the States is 85:15 in the 9th Plan, 75:25 in the 10th Plan and 50:50 thereafter.

Would the expenditure on BRC and CRC resource person be a part of the management cost?

Expenditure on the resource persons in BRC/CRC (20 or 10 per block as the case may be) is not part of the management cost. Other costs on BRC/CRC, provided in the SSA norms such as TLM, Furniture, contingency, TA, Meeting, etc, are also not part of the management cost.

What is the provision under SSA for training of BRC/CRC personnel?

Since BRC/CRC personnel are teachers, training to them can be provided under the head for teachers' training for in-service teachers (20 days).

How should be the BRC/CRC personnel be recruited?

BRC/CRC personnel should be recruited from the existing senior and experienced teachers who have shown the temperament for this kind of job. The resultant vacancies would be filled up with fresh teachers, and so the budgeting would be done based on the salary of these fresh teachers.

Whether BRC/CRC can be opened in urban areas?

If the district in which the urban area lies has no CD Blocks, then BRCs cannot be opened in that urban area. However, if the district has some CD Blocks within its jurisdiction, then scaled down BRCs can be opened in the urban areas within the district, with the proviso that the total expenditure on BRCs/CRCs in the district should not exceed the expenditure which would have been incurred if BRCs were opened at the rate of 1 BRC per CD Block. There is no restriction on opening of CRCs in urban areas.

Whether libraries can be set up at BRCs /CRCs?

Libraries can be set up under the annual TLM grant provided for BRCs and CRCs.

Whether Rs 1200/- per child for IED assistance is only for enrolled children?

This amount is for all children identified during survey, with the objective that these interventions would bring all such children into the school system.

What funds are available for Government aided schools?

Government aided schools should satisfy the following conditions to be eligible for getting some of the grants under SSA:

  1. The admission policy in the aided schools should be similar to that of Government schools in the State.

  2. The aided schools should not be collecting any fee from the students.

  3. Government sanction should be obtained for appointment of teacher

  4. Salary of teachers and their service conditions should be similar to that of Government school teachers.

  5. Syllabus followed should be same as that of Government schools

If the above conditions are satisfied, following may be extended to the district for Government aided schools:

a.      Teachers' grant @ Rs 500/- p.m.

b.      School Grant @ Rs 2000/- p.m.

c.      Teacher Training for Govt Aided School teachers

d.      Free text books to children

Further, in such cases, aided schools may also be taken into account for calculating Research grant.

Whether TLE grant @ Rs 10000/- per school can be given to the existing primary schools not covered under Operation Black Board?

No. Only in case of Upper Primary schools, the uncovered schools are eligible for the TLE grant of Rs 50000/-.

Whether Research Grant is available for EGS centres/bridge courses/alternate schools?

No.

Whether Cantonment Schools are eligible for SSA assistance?

As far as these schools are fully run by the Cantonment Boards and do not charge any fee, these are eligible for assistance under SSA.

Whether Madarsas are eligible for assistance?

Madarsas affiliated to the State Madarsa Boards and satisfying the conditions given in reply to FAQ 23, are eligible for the assistance mentioned in FAQ 23. However, such Madarsas would be expected to follow the curriculum prescribed by the State Madarsa Board.

How many teachers can be provided for new upper primary schools being opened?

A minimum number of three teachers can be recommended, provided such teachers are not available through redeployment, at the rate of one teacher per class. The maximum number would depend on the strength of upper primary sections and would be guided by the provision of one teacher for 40 children.

From which funds curriculum renewal/ text book development & printing could be taken up?

Curriculum renewal could be taken up from the Research Grant. Text Book development and printing could be amortized in the cost of books and the books priced accordingly. So separate funds may not be necessary to be provided for text book development and printing.

Whether workbooks can be distributed within the funds available for free distribution of textbooks?

As far as the workbooks are integral part of curriculum delivery and are regarded as part and parcel of textbooks, they can be funded for free distribution along with textbooks within the overall ceiling of Rs 150/- per child.

Whether transport cost for distribution of books can be provided from SSA funds?

No separate funds need to be provided for this under SSA. The States may include the distribution cost in the cost of the book and price them accordingly.

Under which head costs related to MIS development be provided?

This may be provided under the Research Head.

Whether newsletter can be brought out by States/ Districts?

Newsletters can be brought out by States/ Districts and can be budgeted under the management head?

Whether funds can be provided for media activity?

Funds can be provided for media activity under the management head.

   

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