Karnataka

SSA writes to welfare panel on 311 out-of-school children

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A majority of them are from Ramanagaram district followed by Davangere dist.

The Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) has submitted a letter to the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) about 311 children who have been missing classes for over three weeks. The list has been compiled from districts across the State, and the children will have to be produced before the CWC. A majority, 123, have been identified in Ramanagaram district, followed by Davangere district (91).

The SSA has also issued notices to 8,627 parents whose children have been absent from school for an extended period. In 23 educational districts, however, no students have been identified to be produced before the CWC.

Once a child is not in school for seven consecutive days without prior permission, he or she is considered a drop out. The teacher makes attempts to contact the family to persuade the child to return. If the measures fail, then the parents are issued a notice. The child must be produced before the CWC, if all measures fail. Members of the CWC later pass an order keeping in mind the “best interest of the child”.

Role of CWC

M.T. Reju, State Project Director of SSA, said the role of CWC in dealing with out-of-school children needs to be well-defined.

“There needs to a counselling mechanism and NGOs and donors roped in on case-to-case basis to support such children,” he said.

Earlier in October, the department had identified 9,558 children who did not attend classes for seven consecutive days. As many as 1,005 children attended classes after the teachers identified them and persuaded their families to send them to school.

The report noted that while the highest number of absentees were from Yadgir district (1,547 children), Raichur district recorded zero absentees.

Migrant parents

“People from Yadgir district may have migrated to other places for work so their children would have migrated with them and dropped out of school. As the nature of their work could be temporary, many workers have said that they would enrol the children to school once they return,” said an official of the department.

He also added that the reporting mechanism in districts which have high absentees may be more efficient. “It is not possible to believe that not a single child in Raichur district has not dropped out of school. We have asked officials to review these figures,” an official said.

Mr. Reju also acknowledged that the reporting mechanism needs to be robust.

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 7:32:47 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/ssa-writes-to-welfare-panel-on-311-out-of-school-children/article30152623.ece

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