School Management Committees
As per the section 21 (1) and 21(2) of Right of children to free and compulsory education Act, all government and government-aided schools shall constitute School Management Committee (SMC) of the elected representatives of the local authority, parents and guardians of children admitted in such schools and teachers. As per the act the SMCs should perform following functions:
- Monitor the working of the school
- Prepare and recommend school development plan
- Monitor the utilization of the grants received from the appropriate government or local authority or any other source
- Perform such functions as may be prescribed
On this page, readers can find resources, related to different pilots on SMCs in India, different tools used for the pilots and various debates and views on involvement of community for improving accountability in service delivery.
1) CCS’s project on using community score cards in SMCs in Kota, Rajasthan
"The goal of the project is to make the provision of elementary education aligned to the requirements of the Right to Education Act (RTE Act) in schools covered through the implementation of the community score card and to create of a culture of accountability amongst beneficiaries and providers of services in these schools. The project will be implemented in two villages (one tribal-dominated and one non-tribal) and one town in Rajasthan. Primary education is one of the five subjects that have been devolved to Panchayati Raj institutions in the state making the environment conducive at the local levels for the community score card process."
2) Community based Self Assessment for Quality in Education in seven Mandals of Anantapur District (CfBT)
3) School Management Committees (SMC's) - The guardian institution for elementary education at the village-level - Paribhasha Sharma, Intern, Accountability Initiative
"The Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act (RTE), 2009 has mandated the constitution of a SMC. This is an example of decentralization to make the education system more effective and to encourage participation of parents in the decision process. There have been similar experiments involving SMCs/VECs (Village Education Committees) in countries like Kenya, India and Pakistan with limited success."
4) Effective School Management Commitees - Create India Policy Brief 4, February 2011
"SMCs need resources to build capacity and awareness among members to help them assess needs and requirements for effective learning. Guidelines and checklists are needed for SMCs and should be generated at different levels (national/state/district) to give SMCs a framework. Most SMCs across the three clusters are not aware of levels of access, participation and attainment of children in their area."
5) Our Children, Our Schools – 3 Day Training Module for SMC by SSA, West Bengal
6) Right to Education: Lack of guidance creates confusion over SMC selection - DNA, 28/04/12
"When there are specific norms for representation for the 25% of members in the committee, the norms for formation of 75% members are not specified. The power of choosing the parents in the SMC is given to principals. They choose parents who are not very educated and who do not object to the school authorities' decisions," said an NGO member requesting anonymity.
7) Pitfalls of Participatory Programs: Evidence from a randomized evaluation in education in India – A Study by MIT-Poverty Action Lab, Pratham and World Bank
"Participation of beneficiaries in the monitoring of public services is increasingly seen as a key to improving their quality. We conducted a randomized evaluation of three interventions to encourage beneficiaries’ participation to India: providing information on existing institutions, training community members in a testing tool for children, and training volunteers to hold remedial reading camps. These interventions had no impact on community involvement, teacher effort or learning outcomes inside the school. However, in the third intervention, youth volunteered to teach camps, and children who attended substantially improved their reading skills. This suggests that citizens face constraints in influencing public services."
8) Posts on community participation and SMCs on different blogs:
9) RTE: Confusion over SMC selection - DNA, 28-Apr-2012
"The formation of School Management Committee (SMC) in the primary schools under the Right to Education Act (RTE) is a good idea but lack of any guidance for selection of the members of the committee has raised curiosity among educationists. Such committees are to be formed in 34,000 schools."