Of the 692 children in the age group of six to 14 plus who had remained out of school in Dakshina Kannada early this year, 416 (60 per cent) aged up to 14 have been brought into primary education between April and October this year, according to an official of the Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat.
They were brought into the fold of primary education under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, Geetha Devdas, Assistant Project Officer of the Abhiyan, told The Hindu.
However, 154 children are still out of school. They included 91 children in the age group up six to 14 and 63 in the 14-15 age group. In addition, 122 children from the district have migrated. Those who have migrated belonged to families of daily wage workers and construction workers, she said.
Ms. Devdas said that home-based education, special admission drive and “chinnara angala” programmes were used to bring 416 children into primary education under the abhiyan.
A survey conducted by the Government between January 5 and 8 covering 4.16 lakh families in the district had revealed that 692 children (in the age group of six to 14 plus) had remained out of school. Of them, 303 were girls. The survey had found poverty, social and economic backwardness, lack of education among parents and migration of some families as reasons for children remaining out of school. The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is aimed at bringing all children in the age group of six to 14 into the fold of primary education. The children in the age group of 14 plus would have to be brought under the fold of education under Rashtriya Madhyamika Shiksha Abhiyan, she said.
Ms. Devdas said the department had taken up “Meena” programme in the district.
The main objective of Meena programme was to increase literacy rate among girls, to make them aware of social evils and discrimination against girl children and to eradicate these evils.
A 20-member team, comprising all children including five boys and remaining girls, has been formed in 632 higher primary schools in the district.
The team members chalk out a programme each like visiting homes and convincing parents to send children home and so on. This programme was started from August and is picking up.
This programme is aimed at boosting the confidence level of girls. The Government has extended Meena programme to all districts from this academic year. Earlier it was confined to backward districts where literacy level among girls was low.