People living in rural and remote areas suffer from many problems and a result their children's education is effected. The problem tree given below enlists all the connections between the cause and its effects and brings out why we chose to work with the specific issue of improving the quality of education.
Due to the above listed problems, potential students from disadvantageous landed into informal job sector.
The key problem that SRI seeks to address is that of "ineffective schooling and unsupportive home and community". This problem results in poor learning outcomes of students and early dropouts of the students especially from low economic sections.
From our 2015 survey, we had collected data of 120 academically bright students who finished Class 5 from 2000-2008 from 5 government schools of Jhunjhunu district. We started to reach out to these students to understand their current situation.
From this study we found out two things:
1. Of the students, 55% dropped out before finishing 12th standard
2. Only 2% of the surveyed students graduated with appropriate exposure
These above stated problems exists because there is
Less awareness about quality education
Lack of school engagement with the School Management committee
No incentive for Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) to improve education
Lack of role models in the community
Less involvement of Youth in providing quality education
Lack of awareness around community ownership for the Right to Education (RTE) act
As a result of the main problem, there is
Poor student learning outcome
56.1% of students of standard IV can't even read standard II textbooks*
19% of students of standard IV can't even recognise numbers between 10 and 99*
Lack of community ownership for government schools
Parents are sending their children to private schools (55.7% of the students in the age group 6-14 are enrolled in private school)*
96.6% of the schools had SMCs, but only 11% of the schools had conducted meetings after September 2016*
At the time of initiation of the project stakeholder analysis was done to have an understanding of the present situation of the stakeholders and to identify the gaps at the point of interaction of all.
The different stakeholders:
Despite of many efforts by all, the access of education of students from marginalized communities is still a big problem. The added complexity to this is the education of girl child. Universalization of education has helped all the children to reach schools but the other challenge we as a system are facing is of retention of them. As they grow old the situations at their changes and they are seen as one of bread earning members making them drop out from school at a very early age. Many students tend to join the work their parents are doing after school hours making them more vulnerable to drop out. Due to unavailability of funds at home the scope of being in school system for a long time is still a difficult case for them.
Family can be seen as the rudimentary unit of society and it plays a major role in shaping the future of the child. There’s an ardent need to develop positive mindset around girl child education and creating awareness among parents about the different systems which can be leveraged for better educational opportunities for their children. Because of illiteracy there stuck in the shackles of unorganized sector making hard for them to earn two meals a day. It is important that they should be made aware about the importance of education and how it could help them in coming out of circles of poverty. Encouraging by making them understand that present investments in their child’s education would help them in future.
The focus of having formal education means that the child should be able to develop interest in education and this education would help him to gain confidence and decision making power from different life choices. It is important that teachers should be trained more to be sensitized towards the child and the conditions through which the child is coming. Application of child centric approach where the learning of the child is ensured with regular teacher assessments and constant feedback with participation to all the other stakeholders.
The community at large should also be sensitized to take the responsibility of the education of their children. At present the community prefers to stand aloof towards the educational needs of children as it does not feel the need to participate in the process. They feel that this is a private affair of each and every family.
The community can form a strong pressure group to encourage and support parents to invest in their child’s education. They can also play a key role in ensuring that quality education is provided to the child through the various government institutions like the municipal schools and anganwadis.