Smt. Ranjana Chopra, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, School and Mass Education, GoO, on Monday inaugurated the first batch of trainings for district and block education officers on health and nutrition sensitive programs in schools. Present at the occasion were Mr. Gangadhar Sahoo, State Nodal Officer, MDM, and Ms. Yumi Bae, Chief, UNICEF Odisha.
The capacity building program organized by the School and Mass Education Department, GoO and supported by UNICEF, is planned for approximately 600 District and Block Education Officers and Assistant Block Education Officers (MDM) of the state to ensure effective implementation of health and nutrition programs in schools.
In her inaugural speech, Smt. Ranjana Chopra, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, SME spoke about the huge burden of anemia across the country and stressed on the importance of active participation from education officials in quality iron-folic acid supplementation in schools. She said that the current training programme will help in aligning the district level planning with state level directives.
Mr. Gangadhar Sahoo, SNO, MDM spoke on the various important initiatives that are being implemented through schools like Mid Day Meal and Anemia control programme. He also stressed on the importance of interdepartmental convergence for quality implementation of these programmes. Ms. Yumi Bae, Chief, UNICEF highlighted the linkages between nutrition, health and quality education and acknowledged the officials of education department as the most critical link in ensuring the nutrition and health programmes reach all children and adolescents in schools.
Programs covered under these trainings include Mid Day Meal, National Iron Plus Initiative, Rashtriya Bal Swasthya Karyakram, Rashtriya Kishore Swasthya Karyakram and Universal Salt Iodisation. The training programme will orient participants on the importance of promoting good health and nutrition practices through schools, programme guidelines and protocols. The participants from across the state will be trained in 13 batches.