Staff Reporter

Representatives of 12 NGOs and others attend regional-level consultation

VISAKHAPATNAM: A regional-level consultation held on Saturday at Araku focused on better coordination to improve quality of education among tribals.

Parents, children as well as representatives from 12 NGOs working in North Coastal Andhra reviewed the progress made so far to improving quality of education.

The workshop was held by Nature, a local NGO, with the support from UNICEF and the Administrative Staff College of India at the Tribal Foundation campus. UNICEF Communication Officer Piush Antony explained about the objectives of the consultation. Araku Valley Mandal Education Officer R. Appala Raju said collective efforts would only ensure quality in education in tribal areas and underlined the importance of fixing accountability for the performance of the teachers.

The consultation was conducted as part of a larger participatory review exercise facilitated by UNICEF, ASCI, and the Department of Tribal Welfare in 2009-10. The review was anchored in the rights-based approach and involved a methodology of participatory review and assessment – focusing on institutional and organisational as well as community factors.

The approach recognised that there are multiple stakeholders involved, each with their own perspective and which need to be engaged in order to define any future plan of action to improve services, a tribal welfare officer said.

It has been decided to organise such consultations at Adilabad, Anantapur, Kurnool and Warangal. Issues such as low enrolment of children in schools, poor attendance and performance, not up to the mark quality of education, poverty and the need to work, stigma and discrimination and ill-health and malnutrition will come for discussion at such consultations.