IMPROVED QUALITY OF EDUCATION TO RURAL POOR STUDYING IN GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS IN ANDHRAPRADESH.
Project Krushi” is an initiative by Association Saikorian (Alumni of Sainik School Korukonda), a registered society under the Andhra Pradesh (Telengana Areas) Public Societies Registration Act. Having established on 15th October, 1992 with Registration No. 3728 of 1992, the Association Saikorian is a charitable society with its head quarters at Hyderabad and chapters at Vizag & Vijayawada. The members of the association are spread across India and across the Globe. The organization was promoted with an ideology to help the child to realize his full potential for his all round development. Project Krushi has been working and striving hard for care of children in difficult circumstances, eradication of child labour and education to children in urban slums for their upliftment.
The Association is presently operating three chapters at Hyderabad,Vishakhapatnam and Vijayawada. Each Chapter is run by elected executive body of volunteer representatives of the alumni.
Hyderabad Chapter of Association Saikorian takes care of the management of Project Krushi and other activities. The day to day operations are conducted by the staff and employees appointed by the Association. The activities are enabled by the support of entire Saikorian fraternity, support of extended Saikorians present in India and other parts of the world and many well wishers and friends of the Association and its institutions.
Association Saikorian has over the years undertaken innumerable project and activities for the betterment of education and upliftment of the needy segments of the society, many activities were conducted / undertaken within the city and in slum areas.
Support to Government Schools
In the year 1997, Project Krushi started seven schools in Hyderabad slums, in association with Balajyothi, a Central Government Programme,working for eradication of child labour. Besides providing basiceducation to children in the slums, who otherwise had no access to schools, Project Krushi concentrated on the all round development of the children. The success story of these schools is evident from the fact that the State Government has taken over these schools in the year 2001.Exposure to the Krushi-Balajyothi Schools, has given Project Krushi an insight into the shortcomings in the Government Schools and it was felt that support to the Government schools would help in taking quality education to a large number of children living in urban slums. Towards this end, support to six Government Primary schools was extended in the year 2002-03, by providing them with teaching / learning material,
arranging for better accommodation, providing para teachers, ayahs etc., based on the need of each school. A total of 6173 children in 22 schools in Hyderabad city and Rangareddy district benefited through these interventions.
The concept of “Community Centers” has been developed and implemented in slums of B.K.Guda, Pardhi Basthi and Borabanda, where children, women and youth were supported with vocational training, medical help and counselling.
Summary of the project
It has been proposed to work towards improvement of quality of education in two Government schools in Srirangavaram village of Medchal mandal with teaching learning process/Pedagogy as the core theme along with other interventions that are needed for the holistic development of children studying in these two government schools. Thus, the proposed interventions in this phase include emphasizing better teacher student ratio, creating positive learning environment in school and class through providing learning materials and teaching aids, organization of sports and cultural events, facilitating to improve enrolment and retention of School age children to pursue education in Government schools and motivating local communities and parents to differentiate the quality of education at lower costs in schools run by government rather than expensive private schools.
The project expects to achieve at least 350 children comprising of 160 girls and 190 boys learning levels are enhanced both at pre-primary, primary and at high school, higher completion rates at all levels of schooling and reduction in drop outs over a period of five years.Further, the project is expected to contribute towards increased enrollment of local children in these two government schools in coming years.
|Project Location||Srirangavaram Village, Medchal mandal, Rangareddy district.|
|Region/State||Andhra Pradesh Nearest City: Hyderabad, 60 km.|
|Project Duration||5 years|
Rangareddy District is located in the Central Part of the Deccan Plateau and lies between 160 30′ and 180 20′ of North Latitude and 77030′ and 79030′ of East Longitudes. Medchal mandal in Rangareddy district is located around 40 km away from Hyderabad city. Mandal has total population of 68253, with 35039 females and 33214 male. Density of population in the mandal is 348 and the sex ratio is 948. According to 2011 census literacy rate of the district is at 66.20% comprising of 84% male and female 71.82% literacy rates. According to 2001 census Medchal mandal had an overall 61.59 literacy rate with 50.25% female male 72.3% 1educated. Agriculture, Business, employment in private as well as government sectors, wage labour etc. are found to be the source of income for families in this mandal. In the recent past the mandal has witnessed rapid development due to industrialization and real estate projects. As a consequence in search of employment socio-economically poor families not only from other parts of the states but also from other states also migrated and settled in and around Medchal. With respect to education facilities Medchal mandal has 39 government primary schools and 23 private un-aided schools. In case of upper primary schools 4 government schools and 10 private un –aided schools are there and 12 government high schools and 19 private un-aided high schools are running as per 2001 census records.
The proposed project village Srirangavaram has two government schools one primary and other one is high school, the primary school was started in the year 1947 and upgraded as high school in 1985. Both the schools were well known for their quality of education, due to change in perceptions and attitudes of parents the enrollment in these two government schools has come down. At present primary school has 24: 1 student teacher ratio, whereas the student teacher ratio in high school is 31: 1. Both the schools have good infrastructure facilities like separate class rooms, separate toilets for girls and boys, computer lab etc. and the school management with the support of the Grampanchayat was able to get water facility. In both schools 70% of the students belong to backward classes, 28% to SC/ST and the rest 2% belong to OC category.
Background to the project
To improve the learning levels in government schools, the government of Andhra Pradesh has been experimenting with various policy options by setting up new schools, upgrading the existing ones, recruiting new teachers etc. Despite these facilities due to proliferation of private schools in and around the village lack of proper understanding about of quality of education majority of the parents are sending their children to private schools only, now the plethora of these two government schools is that children belonging to very poor socio-economic conditions are enrolling and continuing education as a consequence children enrollment in these schools is gown down gradually. Further most of the evaluation reports have revealed that in general at primary level the students are not achieving desired levels of proficiency and subsequently the stagnation and failure of students in higher classes is high
Class vise enrollment details of High School (2013)
Class vise enrollment details of Primary School (2013)
Socio-Economic background of the parents
Though the government is supporting them with provision of free text book, school uniform and mid-day meals to all students irrespective of their socio-economic conditions, However, the influence of socio-economic background of the parents on educational decisions is by and large playing a crucial role in governing parental choices for sending children to school and in determining their attendance patterns. The ability of poor families is quite low to sustain the costs involved in their children’s education either direct or indirect costs involved in schooling. The interface between poverty, child labour and schooling among these children is found vicious which are determining the access, punctuality, learning process at school and home, retention and finally are leading to a situation of educational deprivation characterized by irregular attendance and absence.
During the focus group discussion communities shared that parents are illiterate who are engaged in either in agriculture wage labour or industrial wage labour. In majority of the cases it is women who takes care of the family, a significant factor to be noticed is that men are addicted to cheep liquor or alcohol leading to high death rates among them, as a consequence at least 35% of children have only single parent (mother). These widow women earn hardly Rs.100/- to 125/- per day by working in near- by factories, it is reported that 60% male children support their families by working par-time in agriculture fields, supplying vegetables to urban markets, brick clines, quarries etc. in case of girls they support household works. The socio-economic background (income and educational levels) of the parents especially the mother has its indirect impact on their education, leading to attain lower achievement levels compared to their private school counterparts.
|Medium of instruction||High school has medium of instruction both Telugu and English; whereas the students in Telugu medium stream continue in their mother tongue till the completion of the high school. However in case of English medium the students who complete their education till 5th class in Telugu medium are enrolled into English medium in 6th class, sudden change in language of instruction is leading to low attainment levels of the students.|
|School Preparedness||In the rural government school context, children do not have the opportunity of attending any formal Kinder Garden schools. The Government mechanism supports for nutritional and education support of children below 6 years in Anganwadi Centres, later on the child will be enrolled into class one in the primary school. But due to change in the trends of education, after completion of 3 years parents are sending their children to nursery or kinder-garden schools run by private schools, later on students continue to study in those schools only. Since in Government Schools medium of instruction in English is available from 6th Standard/class, and where students struggle to cope up with the change in medium of instruction at that level parents prefer private English medium schools. There is huge gap with regard provision of choice to parents about medium of instruction at nursery level, the initiative is yet to be considered by the Government. The level of preparedness of the children when they enter formal schooling is one of the aspects that has emerged as a possible area of intervention. It is felt that a formal system of ‘getting the child prepared for the formal, structured school environment’ can significantly impact the learning outcome of the children not only in class1 but in the years to come.|
|e-Learning||Government in order to make students acquainted with the usage of computers, Government has provided high schools with required infrastructure. The high school of Srirangavaram village has 10 computers with batteries and generator facilities. Computers basics are taught to children. However, integration e- technologies is learning has not yet taken place due to lack of internet facility in the school. E-learning provides students and teachers with an array of choices to engage with teaching and learning around the globe.|
|Adolescent girls safety||Apart from Srirangavaram village students surrounding villages also attend high school for pursuing education. Banda Madhavaram, Madhavaram, Kummarigadda villages are located around 2 km from the Srirangavaram village, these villages do not have proper approach roads on both the sides bushes and agriculture fields are there which are not safe for Adolescent girls to walk alone. It is interesting to note that these girls are very bright in studies and they belong to Families who migrated from Maharastra 10 years ago in search of work and settle here, though these families belong to SC category they did not get caste certificate in Andhra Pradesh hence they are deprived off various government benefits meant for them.|
Keeping in view of the above, it has been proposed to pursue to strengthen two Government schools in Srirangavaram village with an aim to improve quality of education with special emphasis on pedagogy.
- To ensure improved quality of education to make every child reach required levels of class proficiency.
- To bring down the cost of education to rural poor.
- To integrate computer technology in education.
- To ensure holistic development of students in Education, Sports, Culture and Values.
- To provide Environments that are safe / protective / gender sensitive with adequate resources.
- To get the child prepared for the formal, structured school environment’.
- To improve enrolment of students in Government schools and discourage proliferation/penetration of private schools.
For the period of the current project phase of five years, the Outputs envisaged are
- At least 350 student 160 girls and 190 boys reach required levels of class proficiency.
- Teaching learning Materials are used for the acquisition of required skills for students.
- Qualified trained teachers use child-cantered teaching learning approaches.
- E-learning is mainstreamed.
- Students Stagnation and drop outs are reduced.
- Along with education students excel in sport and other events.
- Gender Sensitive Environment is created.,/li>
- Children are prepared to enter formal school through joining in Pre-primary (Nursery).
- Enrolments in Government Schools increased.
Major Activities (required to achieve the project outputs)
|At Pre-primary and Primary School||
|At High School||
Rationale for the project
- Quality of Education: The Global Monitoring Report 2005 highlights the importance of the quality of education provided in schools, seen in terms of the teaching – learning processes and how much pupils are learning. First of all, quality schooling, generally speaking, means higher life time incomes. By enhancing students’ cognitive skills, improved school quality directly influences their performance in the labour market and hence relates to individual earnings, greater productivity and economic growth. Increased attainment by learners also results in higher completion rates at all levels of schooling and consequent reduction in rates of repetition and drop out (Unesco 2005). Schools are also instrumental in developing desirable non-cognitive outcomes among students that may contribute healthy society such as honesty, reliability, determination, better health and social behavior etc. Apart from influencing individual productivity and income, higher school quality also has a strong impact on economic growth of countries as some studies have shown (Hanushek and Kimko 2000; Lee and Barro 2001). Thus, the quality of the labour force (as measured through mathematics and science test scores) could be regarded as an important determinant of economic growth and could have the potential to alleviate poverty.
- Continuous comprehensive Evaluation: The present the systems of educational methodology is based on CCE (Continuous comprehensive Evaluation ) model where the teacher’s role is facilitator and the learning is child centric or practical based, it triggers an all round development of the learner. It encourages all kinds of learning in life both inside the school as well as outside it. It is child-centered as it attempts to consider the learner as a unique entity for its individual pattern of development. It builds on individual child’s abilities, progress and development in achieving already set goals and objectives of education as an individual and not just his/her position in relation to other learners. Further, this helps a learner to use his/her potential in a better manner and also provides insight to the teachers to discover the methods which may be helpful to the individual learner in resolving his/her problems and difficulties. Continuous evaluation spread over the total span of the instructional time as an integral built-in aspect of the total teaching-learning process. It provides opportunities to teachers to know about their learners What they learn?, How they learn?, What type of difficulties limitations they face in realizing together? What do the children think?, What do the children feel?, What are their interests and dispositions?. Further it reduce stress on children, provide space for the teacher for creative teaching ,provide a tool of diagnosis and remediation and produce learners with greater skills. The CCD system of education is quite new to state schools and which requires students to bring learning materials them- selves.
- Penetration of Private schools: Globalisation and employment market has forced parents and student to change their perception and priorities about education as a result new generation parents prefer to send their children to English medium schools in private sector, which has lead to proliferation of private schools in urban as well as rural areas. Perhaps often it is proved that the quality of education in these private schools is very poor compared to government schools since the purpose of establishment of such institutions is to make profits rather than serving society and quality education to students. Furthermore, in contrary to government schools where qualified and meritorious persons are recruited as teachers where as in private schools non- qualified staff are appointed as teachers as result quality of education is not at all ensured. Private schools have very high fees structure with inbuilt donations for various other purposes like building fund, corpus fund, specific occasion based funds etc. It is worthwhile to note in spite of such collections it is found that they do not provide students with good quality of education and infrastructure facilities like libraries, laboratories, play – ground for recreation and in some instances with -out proper registration with government agencies schools are run where students are barred for appearing for board examinations leave parents and students in distress.
Project Strategy to achieve the project purpose
A committee will be formed involving teachers, students from high school both girls and boys, parents, community members and project Krushi representatives to plan, design, implement and monitor the progress of the project. The committee facilitate to make pedagogy more interesting and bring to about harmony between knowledge and application in day to day life through:
Exploratory knowledge getting
Constructive experience getting(projects model)
A Pleasant, Joyfull and conducive learning environment will be created through making classes interactive, role plays, dramatization, plays, debates, discussions, speeches spelling games, story games, project works, observation, of animal and plants, experiments, collaborations and improving positive emotions all these make students free of fear and stress and learning takes place spontaneously. Further, Students in high school will be teamed into groups of five each where the team leaders would support their team members in learning process.
Role of Communities in the project
- Parents get involved in the planning, designing, implementing and monitoring the project.
- Parents are motivated to send their children regularly to school and support for their education.
- Parents of the children act as change agents for influencing others to enroll their children in government schools.
The project will be implemented in two government schools of Srirangavarm village. The over all project facilitation will be taken up by Project Krushi. The project will deploy Teachers and one project coordinator, and the school level committee with the support of Project Krushi team members will take the responsibility facilitating project on proposed project interventions.
Project Monitoring and Evaluation: The committee formed for planning, designing and implementing will be closely monitoring the progress of the project along with Project Krushi team. Once in 6 months internal project monitoring and evaluation would be carried out by Project Krushi team, and feedback will be provided to the committee and school authorities.
The proficiency levels of students at primary levels are enhanced resulting in continuation and completion of higher education influencing the parental decision positively on enrolling children in Government Schools.