New Delhi : President Ram Nath Kovind on September 5, presented the National Teacher Award to 44 most talented teachers selected from all over the country on the occasion of Teachers’ Day. The award was also bestowed upon Pramod Kumar Shukla, English Lecturer of Eklavya Model Residential School (EMRS), Karpawand, Bastar Chattisgarh. It is a second award in a row for EMRS teacher and holds special significance for Eklavya Model Residential Schools established under Ministry of Tribal Affairs. Last year, Ms. Sudha Painuli, Vice Principal, EMRS-Kalsi, Dehradun, Uttarakhand had got this award in 2020.
Department of School Education & Literacy under Union Ministry of Education had constituted an Independent Jury at National Level to bestow the National Award to Teachers (NAT) for the year 2021. Sh Pramod Kumar Shukla made it to the list of 44 outstanding teachers from all over India selected after 3-stage rigorous online transparent process. Due to COVID-19 crises, the teachers made the presentation to Independent National Jury through video conferencing. The award was bestowed through felicitation ceremony held virtually from New Delhi, while the teachers joined from their respective State Capitals.
The concept of setting up EMRSs started in the year 1997-98 with aim to impart quality education to ST children in their own environment and 288 schools were approved by 2018. The scheme was revamped in 2018 and target of setting up residential school in every block with 50% or more ST population and 20,000 or more tribal persons was fixed. 452 new schools would be set up under the new scheme and by 2025, 740 (288+452) schools will be set up under National Education Society for Tribal students (NESTS). As on date, total 632 EMRSs have been approved by Ministry of Tribal Affairs. States have provided land in 555 locations and construction in 201 schools has been completed. Construction in 168 schools is under progress and it is expected that in remaining 186 schools where land is provided by states construction would start by March 2022. There are 367 functional schools with around 85700 students enrolled in these schools.
Sh Shukla has been teaching in one such school in Chattisgargh and is very committed in teaching the tribal students hailing from remotest LWE affected tribal area. The most unique accomplishments about his teaching journey constitute amalgamation of joyful learning techniques such as Free Drama Day, “Padhai Tunhar Para”, Vocabulary Rocket to make learning stimulating and experiential based. When COVID-19 had closed the schools and imparting education physically has become very difficult, his innovative experiments in teaching through Youtube channels and teaching through CABLE TV, use of government platform, etc. ensured students’ learning to continue uninterruptedly. His achievement strongly institutes the determination and will of the Ministry to create a fine balance between academic education and all-round development of the students.
Sh. Arjun Munda, Minister of Tribal Affairs (MoTA), on his achievement shared, “It is a proud moment for EMRS. This achievement will motivate the entire EMRS teaching fraternity to showcase their excellence in the education field and uplift the standard of quality education provided to tribal students.” The award is a result of concerted efforts put in by the Ministry to work for the cause of improvement in quality of education for tribal students.
Smt. Renuka Singh Saruta and Sh. Bishweswar Tudu, Ministers of State for Tribal Affairs congratulated Sh. Pramod Shukla and entire fraternity of EMRS teachers and said that such achievements would motivate other teachers to give their best for promoting education in remote tribal areas. Award is a recognition for all the EMRS teachers and principals working for raising the quality education standards for tribal students.
With the implementation of National Education Policy- 2020, it is believed that greater thrust shall be given to teachers as they gain centre-stage, empowering the teachers to implement the NEP recommendations. It holds direct insinuations to change the facet of EMRSs established for providing quality education to tribal students at the behest of talented and committed teachers.