Pradhan Mantri Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (PM-USHA) scheme
With the reference of a report 14 States and Union Territories are yet to sign a crucial Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Union Education Ministry.
The MoU mandates the implementation of the National Education Policy in order to avail funds worth almost ₹13,000 crore for the next three years.
These funds will be disbursed under the Centre’s flagship scheme for State-run higher education – Pradhan Mantri Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (PM-USHA).
Reasons for states not joining PM-USHA:
- Pradhan Mantri Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (PM-USHA) ie PM-USHA is the flagship scheme of the Central Government for state-run higher education.
- The scheme mandates the implementation of the new National Education Policy (NEP) to receive funds of about ₹13,000 crore for the next 3 years.
- Along with this, the states will have to arrange 40% of the funds themselves. States argue that they do not have the funds to bring changes related to NEP.
- Apart from the adoption of NEP 2020, the MoU also includes, inter alia, the commitment of the states on adopting the National Credit Framework for Four Year Undergraduate Program and Guidelines for Choice Based Credit System.
- The scheme aims at improving quality through curriculum and program changes, teacher training, physical and digital infrastructure, accreditation and enhancing employability, and ensuring equity, access and inclusion.
- The scheme ‘Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA)’ has been renamed as ‘Pradhan Mantri Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (PM-USHA)’ in June 2023 under the National Education Policy.
- Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), is a centrally sponsored scheme which was launched in 2013. The second phase of the scheme was launched in 2018.
- Its objective was to provide strategic funding to higher education institutions across the country.
- A provision of 12929.16 crore outlay has been made between 2023-24 and 2025-26 under the PM-USHA scheme. Out of which the central share is 8120.97 crores and the state share is 4808.19 crores.
Objective of the Scheme:
- To enhance quality in higher education institutions, ensure compliance with norms and accreditation standards, promote governance and academic reforms, and encourage research and innovation.
- PM-USHA aims to transform higher education, ensure quality and equity, and promote innovation, research and employability in line with the National Education Policy.
- The MoU is being signed to show the strong will of the States and UTs to participate in the PM-USHA scheme and will help in better implementation of the scheme.
Source – The Hindu