Rail News


November 02 , 2021

Many railway schools likely to be closed in 2022

The Hindu 
October 31, 2021 (India)

When the academic year begins in 2022, many railway schools across the country are likely to be closed. The Indian Railways has decided to go ahead with the closure of its schools and merge students with either Kendriya Vidyalayas or State Government schools as feasible.

General Managers of Zonal Railways have been told to identify schools with a relatively smaller number of railway wards that could be merged with and intimate the probable date of closure. Where it is absolutely essential to retain the schools, a detailed justification would have to be furnished to the Railway Board.

In an official communication issued early this week, the Railway Board, while asking its General Managers to assess the situation and take a call, said that efforts should be made not to cause discomfort to the families of the children studying in the schools that would be closed/merged.

It was also emphasised that no promotions in the Group-B/Senior Scale/Junior Administrative Grade be processed where rationalisation of schools were being done. No further indents should be placed to the Railway Recruitment Board as regards the schools planned for closure.

The move to close down the decades-old railway schools follows the recommendations of Principal Economic Adviser Sanjeev Sanyal on the rationalisation of government bodies under the Ministry of Railways. The action on the recommendations got expedited after the Cabinet Secretariat, Rashtrapati Bhavan, called for a monthly update on the PEA’s report.

In his report, Mr. Sanyal said the railways were running 94 schools providing education for children of not only railway employees but others too. However, as of 2019, only 15,399 railway wards were enrolled in these schools which was less than half of other non-railway students who constituted 34,277. The Railways also supported 87 Kendriya Vidyalayas where 33,212 railway wards and 55,386 other students were enrolled. Of the total eight lakh children of railway employees in the 4-18 age-group, less than 2% were enrolled in railway schools.

Mr. Sanyal noted that operating railway schools consumed a large amount of time of the railway management whose core competence was in operation and maintenance of trains. “Thus, we recommend minimising the time of railway management in running schools, except where absolutely necessary…” he said.


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