Education of Out of School Children, and Adolescent
Education of every child matters.
We started supporting the learning and school education
of out-of-school children in the year 2000.
So far about 16,000 children have been supported in Raebareli, Banda, Lucknow, Saharanpur, Jaunpur, and Haridwar.
In recent years we have been supporting annually supporting about 4,000 children.
Right to Education Act envisages that all children of 6-14 age complete elementary education.
But a large number of children are out of school and they have a few years of schooling which couldn’t impart
foundational literacy and numeracy.
And because of this also about 30% drop out after Class 5.
Many government schools are far, especially Junior schools in rural areas and even primary schools are far.
The option of private schooling is too costly for them.
While these contribute to their being pushed out, economic stress and need to either supplement household income or chores.
Lokmitra has Four Models of supporting learning of out-of-school children.
A project can have a mix of all as per goal.
During the Covid pandemic, fourth model evolved children affected by school lockdown and the digital divide.
One is Two Hour Learning session at Supplementary Learning Center (SLC) in the locality. Another is the Learning Resource Center (LRC) with extended hours of operation where children flexible times to come to.
SLCs focus more on foundational Reading and Numeracy, LRC provides more time for Learning Activities, Library sessions.
The third Model is the residential Camp of 1 week to 4 months.
Residential Camps provide a good opportunity for skill development like working in a team, taking leadership, delving into local developmental issues and services, getting exposed to vocations and learn to handle tools, etc.
The fourth model provides joyful learning at home, in the neighborhood by local volunteers. Family members are involved by enhancing their understanding. This approach relies on storybooks, story-sessions, worksheets, learning activities, and Mobile Apps. Along with one-to-one & small group interaction, family & children were reached out by phone call and Whatsapp.
Saharanpur is home to a large number of Out-of-School children who are also engaged in wood carving, hosiery work, etc.
From 2015 Lokmitra got engaged in mobilizing such children for learning support and re-enrollment to school. The adjoining city of Haridwar was also covered.
Since 2015, a total of 8,640 were mobilized for learning at Supplementary Learning Center being run their neighborhood.
Most of these children attended for about 6 to 18 months. Out of them, about 31% (2644) took admission in schools.
In the year 20-21, about 2800 Children were supported, this was done in the adverse situation due to Covid.
Lokmitra has been engaging with out-of-school children for their education and mainstreaming since 2000. Up to 2011, about 3,000 OoSC were mobilized and about half of them joined schools. An example impact of this phase was that in 2013 one such girl Ms. Neeta Maurya become a graduate and joined Lokmitra as an Education Camp Teacher.
During the year 2009-2011 with the support of ITC Ltd, about 400 OoSC mobilized in rag picking in Lucknow City were enrolled in schools after providing them foundational reading and numeracy skills.
Adolescents Education Program was implemented during 2012-2015 with the support of Tata Trust. We mobilized 2,456 out-of-school adolescents (1,496 girls), not only for foundational literacy and numeracy but also for life skills and vocational orientation. Out of them, 575 (359 girls) adolescents attended 4 months residential camps. About 40% i.e. 947 (521 girls) re-joined schools. The project enhanced adolescents’ awareness and skills for effective engagement in civic & economic life.
In Dec 2014 Sangeeta shared her story of empowerment in a Women’s Awareness Program organized by Lokmitra. She told how after dropping out from Class 8, she again continue her school education and now she is in Class 10. She was motivated to use her father’s bicycle to go to school that was 12 Km away. She again joined the school in Class 9. She had learned cycling in the residential camp. Once on the way when was teased by some boys, she along with her friends, made them mend their ways. Later she got a bicycle from Lokmitra and become regular in her schooling. Then 19-year-old Sangeeta has been resident of Jamadar village of Deeh.