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Bihar: 23 lakh out-of-school kids to get education
January 19, 2007 14:53 IST
The Bihar government has launched a massive programme to bring over 23 lakh out-of-school children to educational institutions in the state.
The programme called Sankalp (pledge) was launched by the Bihar Education Project Council.
All 83 blocks in the districts of Kishanganj, Araria, Sitamarhi, Sheohar, Rohtas, Vaishali and Jamui would be covered in its first phase to bring 4.5 lakh children to schools by March.
According to figures made available by UNICEF, there are about 23.19 lakh out-of-school children aged between six and 14 years in the state.
Of them, 51.4 per cent are boys and 48.6 per cent girls. Of the total out-of-school children, over 36 per cent (8.45 lakh) are children aged six to eight years, 27 per cent (6.32 lakh) are eight to 11 years, and 36 per cent (8.42 lakh) are 11 to 14 years, a UNICEF report said.
The number of out-of-school children is highest in Madhubani (1.17 lakh), followed by East Champaran (1.15 lakh), West Champaran (1.12 lakh) and Siwan (1.04 lakh), the report said.
The lowest number of out-of-school children is in Munger (23,100) followed by Sheikhpura (23,700) and Gaya (23,800). Of 533 blocks in the state, 30 have more than 10,000 children deprived of school education while 29 blocks have 8,000 to 10,000 such children.
BEPC Project Director A K Singh said the strategy for bringing children to school includes micro-planning to identify out-of-school children and starting non-residential and residential "bridge courses" for children later inducted in mainstream formal schools.
The strategy also entails undertaking intensive social mobilisation and community participation for wider understanding of the benefits of education.
"There is a sense of urgency to provide education to all children in the state as education is their fundamental right," Singh said adding, the appointment of 2 lakh teachers, construction of about 1 lakh classrooms and opening of 15,000 new schools would strengthen Sankalp.
In the second phase, the programme will cover 146 blocks in eight districts, benefiting about 5 lakh children, and in the third phase, the remaining blocks and districts in the state will be covered to bring all children to schools.
Sankalp aims to provide education to all out-of-school children and quality education to all children, he said.