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Dropouts back in village school

Staff Reporter
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Awareness building efforts by Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan officials bear fruit

Parents along with their children attend the awareness programme at the coastal village in Tharuvaikulam near Tuticorin on Wednesday.— Photo: N. Rajesh
Parents along with their children attend the awareness programme at the coastal village in Tharuvaikulam near Tuticorin on Wednesday.— Photo: N. Rajesh

Ten children who dropped out of school in the coastal village of Tharuvaikulam have resumed their education from Wednesday.

District Coordinator, Out of School Children programme, SSA, Tuticorin, M. Koodalingam said the 10 dropouts would initially attend Non Residential Special Training Centres (NRSTC) for six to 10 months before entering mainstream education.

Hailing the initiative, Tharuvaikulam panchayat president S. Maharajan assured the families of the children of support from the panchayat.

So far, 1, 332 dropouts had been identified in 2013-14, of which 1, 188, including 735 boys and 453 girls, are in the age group of six to 14 years. Of the remaining 144 dropouts, 80 children have migrated and 64 are yet to be enrolled, he said.

The rehabilitation of the school dropouts into the educational system is for the most part the result of awareness building efforts by the officials of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, Tuticorin, who interacted with the parents of dropouts and propagated the benefits of education. Voluntary organisations such as Child Helpline and People’s Action for Development Trust pitched in with skits highlighting the objectives of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009. Students from the village took out rallies to stress the importance of education as part of the awareness building campaign.

At a programme launched on the premises of the local St. Catherine’s School, the Additional Chief Educational Officer of the SSA, P. Saroja, said education was key to children’s wellbeing and success.

The newly enrolled dropouts were presented with uniforms and school bags on the occasion.

Assistant Project Officer, SSA, R. Kuruvaiah, Ottapidaram Block Supervisor, A. Vijayan, Assistant Educational Officers, Murugan and Ganesan, Media and Documentation Officer, M. Senthil Kumar and Sr. Mercy Rani, Headmistress of the primary school attended the programme.

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