Through its annual night survey, the State department of Public Instruction enrolled these children in schools on Friday. For most of them, this initiative under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), will give a chance to attend school for the first time in their lives.
This year’s enrollment number is twice that of last year’s 51 children. The survey, which commenced on January 5, ended on Friday. Among the children was Mailu, a 14-year-old whose parents had migrated from Tamil Nadu ten years ago. “I don’t like going to school,” was her initial reaction when the SSA team went to enroll her. She and her family live on the footpath in K R market. The family is financially dependant on Mailu and her 17-year-old brother Elumale. Both have never been to school, and when the SSA team approached them to enroll their children to school, they were hesitant.
“If they go to school who will earn for us?,” asked Mailu’s mother. It was a difficult task for the SSA team to persuade the family to send their children to school. Another family from Raichur had stopped their seven-year-old daughter from going to school, as she went missing one day when she lost her way back home.
“We are providing transportation to such children. If there are five such kids, we will arrange an autorickshaw for their conveyance,” said S K Channabasappa, Deputy Director of Public Instruction, Bangalore South.
The survey was spread over three days in the City. Every district in Karnataka performs the inspection, but night survey is carried out only in Bangalore. In all, 31 teams worked on the night survey in different areas of Bangalore.
Before launching the survey, the families are mapped by the SSA team in different locations. According to a report released by the Department of Public Instruction, Bangalore, South, there are 13 lakh families under the plan to provide free education, text books, and uniforms till class VIII.
“We have planned a team according to the data released. There are 13,800 teachers appointed to administer these families. Another 1,380 supervisors assist these teachers,” informed Leelavathi Desai, Assistant Project Co-ordinator, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.