New Delhi, Jan 31: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will present his fifth consecutive budget for the fiscal year 2018-19 in Parliament on February 1. While last year the government had allocated Rs 79,686 crore to the education sector, against Rs 73,599 crore for the financial year 2016-17, this year it is expected to rise by 14 per cent. The focus of the Budget 2018 for education is likely to be on the schemes launched by the government and quality improvement. Also Read - Finance Act 2018 Clarifies Applicability of Standard Deduction For Pensioners

As this will be the first budget after implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), everyone, including students, has expected more finance allocation from this finance bill. In 2017, the Education sector had 10 per cent more fund allocation, from Rs 72,394 crore in 2016 to Rs 79,686 crore, with the major push being given to higher education. The school sector was allocated Rs 46,356 crore. Also Read - List of Things That Will be More Expensive From April 1, 2018

Arun Jaitley on Monday presented the Economic Survey 2018 of India and said that the government is committed to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG- 4) for education. “Ensure inclusively and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning by 2030,” he said. Except for higher budget allocation for the education sector, here’s all that students have been expecting from Budget 2018-19.

ALLOCATION OF FUNDS

One of the government sources revealed that the government’s mid-day meal scheme and right to education are likely to get more fund allocation than the previous year. While the mid-day meals scheme is expected to get Rs 300 crore more, the innovation of the government schools and improvement in learning outcomes are expected to be highlighted in the Budget 2018.

“It will be much less than what the ministry demanded, but higher than the previous year’s allocations in the range of 11-14%,” one of the government officials was quoted as saying by Livemint.

SARVA SHIKSHA ABHIYAN

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) was allocated Rs 1000 crore more than the 2016 Budget. Since it focuses on quality of learning and it completing 100 per cent enrollment, students have been expecting more allocation to improve teaching-learning outcomes.

A unit of budget from Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is expected to be used for financial boost to NCERT.

EDUCATION LOAN

More relaxation in education loan is being expected in Budget 2018-19.

HIGHER EDUCATION

To ensure that “Indian universities are counted among the best in the world”, Rs 3000 crore was allocated to the Indian Institute of Technologies (IITs). Rs 10,000 crore more will be given to at least 20 universities in an attempt to make them World Class Universities. Except for that Rs 456.10 crore was allocated to Indian Institute of Technology Madras, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi to improve infrastructure.