Seeks basic amenities in all schools

There is high dropout rate among children studying in rural government schools in the district due to various factors and it is high time sincere efforts are made to arrest the disturbing trend, feel activists of People’s Voice for Child Rights (PVCR).

A total of eight government schools in the district have been closed on the plea of lack of students during the last six years, PVCR State joint secretary Vijayalakshmi and district joint secretary Satyanarayana told a media conference here on Friday.

They attributed the high dropout rate to lack of basic infrastructure, shortage of teachers and commuting distance between the villages and the schools.

The demands of PVCR include: reopening of the closed schools, provision of basic amenities at all schools and ensuring security of girl students at all schools and hostels.

Parents of children in tribal and far-flung villages do not evince interest in sending their children to high school as they could instead be ‘gainfully’ employed on the fields or to do household work. The rape in Delhi has given one more reason for some parents to withdraw their daughters from schools and colleges and perform their marriage early. This was reflected in the words of some rural children who were present at the media conference.

“We have to walk all the way to Narsipatnam, about 6 km away, to reach our school everyday. Our parents are withdrawing us from school and either performing marriages early or engaging us in agricultural works,” said M. Revathi of Erakampeta village of Golugonda mandal. Both her elder sisters have dropped out of school.

“We have to walk for about 5 km on the canal bunds from AP Puram to MV Patnam of Nathavaram mandal everyday. During the rains, the bunds turn slippery and there is a danger of falling into the streams,” laments Ch. Indu, a 6 class student. Her parents withdrew her from the school.

“Education volunteers were not evincing interest in teaching as they are not being paid their salaries for several months. In some places they were not paid their salaries for a whole year and what more could be expected of them,” said Lakshmi, a governing body member of PVCR.

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