We have been going to our village in Bareilly frequently so she couldn’t go to school. Also, she is not learning anything special here so there is no point sending her. We will manage her admission in a private school, he said.
On the other hand, Class 4 student Sneha Khatun at MCD Primary School, Munirak Village, has been missing school because the school authority has refused to take her in Class 5 due to long absenteeism.
I moved to Delhi from Kolkata in search of work three years back and got Sneha enrolled in Class 2. But couldn’t give much attention to her studies since I was a single parent and had another child to take care of. Last year, when my father was ill, I had to go back to Kolkata for long time and when I came back the school refused to take her back, Sneha’s mother, Sultana Bibi, said from Kolkata.
We are trying our level best to bridge the gap. But at the same time we can’t stop children from going to Delhi Government’s Sarvodaya Schools, which have introduced nursery classes as well. Similarly, the mushrooming English medium schools also attract parents, said the official from South Corporation.
But NGOs working in the field of education deny the claims. The fact is that teachers don’t put efforts to find out the reasons when children do not come to schools. In extreme circumstances, they just send other students to find out the reason. Ideally, they should go in personally and if that fails to get results, the matter should be raised in the school monitoring committees, said Saurabh Sharma from Josh NGO.
According to Sharma, the gaps were highlighted when the exercise to attach students’ Aadhar cards with their bank accounts started in 2016. The civic agencies have so far attached the accounts of 75% students with Aadhar numbers.
As per norms, for every 35 children there should be one teacher. But there are instances in which 20 students are present in one class at MCD schools. And teachers fearful of getting transferred do not report the absent students in their class, said Divya Prabakar, former fellow at Teach for India.
According to experts, the issues won’t be sorted out unless quality of education and facilities would improve in these schools.