'Poor education in govt schools leads to high dropout'

Students made to do odd jobs, says forum

The Right to Education Act will complete three years on March 31. But members of Social Jurist, a forum working for the cause of education for all, said apart from non-implementation of the Act, quality of education provided by government schools should at least match the standards of Kendriya Vidyalayas to attain the goal of quality education.

“The situation is dismal everywhere. The government has failed to address the core issue of providing quality education to 200 million children in the age group of six to 14 years,” said Ashok Agarwal, advisor, Social Jurist.

He said nearly 100 million children are still out of school.

“Twenty million children with disabilities, 10 million children of migrant labour, and 40 million children engaged in labour and 30 million older children, particularly girls looking after siblings, are still out of schools,” Agarwal said.

The members of the forum said dropout rate is increasing in government schools for the past three years.

At least 100 million children going to government schools are not getting proper education. There has been a high percentage of dropout in these three years due to lack of quality education, said a member.

Bleak situation

According to members, although the government’s propaganda about the RTE Act has increased the demand for education, especially among the marginalised section of society, the idea of providing education for all is rather bleak with hardly any basic infrastructure and teachers in government-run schools.

A member said schools run by municipal corporations are the worst for children in Delhi. Mostly, poor students go there and teachers behave badly with them. They ask students to do odd jobs, the member added.

“Government schools are better if one compares them with MCD schools. But the situation is dismal in these schools too. Then private schools on government land try every trick to divert the mandatory 25 per cent admission for economically weaker section category students,” said the member.

The government has not taken any effective step to implement the RTE provision relating to EWS category students in unaided non-minority schools, the member said.
“Unless and until the standard of all government schools in the country is upgraded to the minimum level of Kendriya Vidyalayas (Central Schools), the goal of realisation of right to good quality education will remain elusive,” said Agarwal.

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