Though the UT Education Department offers academic scholarships in 10 categories for its students, the amount of money fails to attract students. In some cases, the scholarship amount ranges from Rs 150 to Rs 200 per month. Further, the tedious process to avail this amount proves to be a deterrent for students.
As per the statistics compiled by the education department for 2013-14, there are no beneficiaries for the talent search scholarship and also for the underprivileged students of SC category while there are only 12 takers this year for the merit scholarship given on the basis of class V scholarship exam.
However, students of government schools complain about the lack of information about scholarships offered. “There are no announcements about the scholarships, nothing is mentioned on the noticeboards and we are not even given the prospectus where the scholarships are mentioned with the conditions and procedure for applying for them,” said a class VIII student at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 21.
A teacher on the condition of anonymity said, “Students do not have a problem with the lesser amount of the scholarship but the whole procedure for application and sanction is slow. If a class X student has applied for a merit-based scholarship, he will receive the scholarship only after he leaves the school after doing his class XII.”
In order to enrol maximum girl students, to improve their attendance in schools and to ensure enrolment of all SC/ST students in the age group of 6-14 years, there are scholarships worth Rs 250 per month for 10 months. There are scholarships for physically handicapped students as well in which Rs 250 are given for 12 months to the students of classes 1 to V, and Rs 300 for 12 months to the students of classes VI to VIII. Also, to improve the pass percentage and the merit of the students of classes IX to XII, scholarships worth Rs 300 and Rs 350 are given for 12 months receptively.
In the class VIII merit scholarship, there are only 36 takers this year while 129 have applied for the scholarship to the physically handicapped. Under the attendance scholarship, as many as 9,138 have applied and for merit scholarship to class IX to XII students, 564 students have applied.
The scholarships which provide a decent financial aid worth Rs 500-3,000 per student are the Centrally sponsored schemes. Under the National Scheme of Incentive to SC girls for secondary education, 214 girls have applied during the year 2013-14 but here the beneficiaries are eligible to draw a payment of Rs 3,000 on attaining the age of 18 years after qualifying class X exam.
Under this, pre-matric scholarships to the students of minority communities, admission fee of upto Rs 500, tuition fee of upto Rs 350 and maintenance allowance of Rs 100 per month are given to the students for a year. The Central government has to provide scholarships to 3,000 Sikhs, 800 Muslims, 200 Christians, 18 Parsis and 36 Buddhists. As many as 1,849 students of Sikh community have applied while 2,597 have applied under the Muslim category. While 144 students of Christian community have applied, only one student of Buddhist category has applied for the scholarship.