80% of our huge country is still living in the rural area. Education is the most important factor that builds the foundation of the country’s future generation. It is also the key to a sustained economic growth.
Currently, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) is implemented as India’s main programme for universalizing elementary education. Its overall goals include universal access and retention, bridging of gender and social category gaps in education and enhancement of learning levels of children. SSA provides for a variety of interventions, including inter alia, opening of new schools and alternate schooling facilities, construction of schools and additional provisioning for teachers, periodic teacher training and academic resource support, textbooks and support for learning achievement. These provisions need to be aligned with the legally mandated norms and standards and free entitlements mandated by the RTE Act. Shift is one such organization which is working for similar causes.
But the statistics of the number of schools in Gujarat and Rajasthan according to the Shift campaign is quite alarming. In most of these regions schools run by the government are free but, without any aid or basic stationery goods.
Keeping in view this massive shortage of stationery supplies in schools, Shift is raising a huge concern and also making efforts to raise an amount as low as Rs 10/- per child, to buy these stuff.
In Gujarat, as many as 15,557 households in 779 villages of 26 districts were covered in the 2016 ASER. It revealed that enrolment rate of children in Gujarat villages was 97.6 per cent, against the national average of 97 per cent.
However, the attendance level of enrolled children has declined to 83 per cent in 2016 from 85.5 per cent in 2014.
Most of these kids inspite of being intelligent and enrolled in respective government schools are unable to pursue their studies due to lack of basic tools like pens, pencils, papers, chalk, erasers and black boards. Some of them rise up early morning and walk 8 to 10 miles to reach school. Attending school is the most tenacious job for these kids.
Not every family in the remote areas of Gujarat and Rajasthan can afford stationery as most of them survive with bare minimum necessities and need a drastic change in their living conditions.
Though the literacy rate in Rajasthan has increased in last few years but its overall literacy is way behind the national average.
According to the Elementary private schools are in rural areas as well. Of the five types of schools, primary schools create the largest groups. Across the state of Rajasthan there are a total of 109,189 schools. Of these 77,833 are government schools and 29,766 are private schools. There are only 1,590 unrecognized schools. Of the government schools, a majority of 72,954 are in rural locations.
Shift is trying to bring a shift in this downslide of education through it’s educational campaign and supply stationery items to all the kids in rural Gujarat and Rajasthan in a limited time span. We pledge to give our 100% towards promoting education in these areas.