The Sainik Schools are a system of schools in India established and managed by the Sainik Schools Society. They were conceived in 1961 by V. K. Krishna Menon, the then Defence Minister of India, to rectify the regional and class imbalance amongst the Officer cadre of the Indian Military, and to prepare students for entry into the National Defence Academy (NDA), Khadakwasla, Pune and Indian Naval Academy. Today there are 24 such schools covering all the states of the country.The schools come under the purview of respective state governments and Ministry of Defence, and in his Union Budget of 2008, Finance minister, P Chidambaram, allocated Rs 2 crore to each of the 22 Sainik schools, to counter rising attrition in the defence forces, especially at the officer level.
"To upgrade the schools as modern public schools offering education to childern of common man and to effectively use technology to integrate with the futuristic knowledge based society of emergning globalised world."
Salient Features of Sainik Schools
(a) The entire capital expenditure on land and buildings is met by the respective State Govts who are also required to provide funds for maintenance of infrastructure and for new infrastructural projects. The State Govts also award scholarships on merit cum means basis.
(b) These are fully residential schools run on public school lines. The schools provide all facilities for overall personality development. NCC is compulsory upto class-XII.
(c) They offer a common CBSE curriculum and the medium of instruction is English, though English is not a pre-requisite for admission.
(d) Most Sainik Schools are designed for 525 cadets spread over from class-VI to XII. However strength of the school can vary keeping in view available capacity and after taking permission of the Hony Secy.
(e) These are financially self sustaining institutions and all expenditure on establishment, training and pension are met out of fee collected from the students.
(f) All schools have three service officers Principal, Headmaster and Registrar. Principals are of the rank of Col, Headmasters are of the rank of Lt Col and Registrars are Major. These may be of equivalent rank from the three services.
Role of Ministry of Defence in Sainik Schools
(a) Ministry of Defence provides scholarships to wards of defence personnel including ex-servicemen. In addition Ministry of Defence provides central assistance to those students who are awarded state scholarships. The sharing of expenditure on fees/scholarships among Central Govt, State Govt and parents is decided by the BOG from time to time.
(b) With effect from financial year 2003-04, the Ministry of Defence has implemented a scheme under which burden of fee and dietary charges are being shared between the Ministry of Defence and the parents in the ratio 3 : 1. Under this scheme all boys studying in Sainik Schools get financial assistance of about Rs.9,000 – 10,000 every year. The scheme also provides incentive to boys who join the NDA by refunding.