To build a National System of Education based on the principle of Common School System.
To transform all government schools into centers of quality excellence by contributing to the overall development of schools.
Engage directly on a day-to-day basis with the primary stakeholders –Teachers, Parents, Children and Community at large to achieve the Mission, Goal and Objectives of the program.
To promote the concept - Universalisation of School Education (USE) i.e. the State has a duty to provide free, equitable and compulsory education to all children till they complete standard 10
- To ensure quality education and services start at the level of primary education and extend to support and develop adolescent capabilities
- To establish links with relevant State Departments such as Social Welfare, Labour, Women and Child Welfare besides the Department of Education to bring convergence
- To ensure active community participation in the management of schools
Field Extension program of Education
Right to free and compulsory education as a directive principle was an elusive goal for a long time in post independent India. One can attribute various reasons for the colossal failure of the Constitutional mandate. However, the two important reasons are lack of political will and allocation of adequate resources.
Against this background in the year 1993 the Supreme Court of India gave a verdict to incorporate the right to education as fundamental right of children until the age of 14 years in the case of Uninikrishan vs. State of Andhra Pradesh. Unfortunately while translating this verdict of the Supreme Court by amending the Constitution of India the verdict was diluted and reduced to 6 to 14 years and 0 to 6 year children were kept outside the purview of fundamental right. Finally the Indian Constitution was amended in 2002 to make education a fundamental right for all children in the age of six to fourteen years.
With the 86th amendment to the Constitution free and compulsory education became a fundamental right that could be justified in a court of law. The central government initiated a process to enact a Central legislation that would operationalise the Constitutional 86th Amendment Act 2002. At this juncture one of the representatives of the Centre for Child and Law (CCL), National Law School of India University (NLSIU) was invited to be a member of the drafting Committee.
After attending the first round of discussion on the proposed draft legislation it was realized that legislations should be framed based on policies that emerge from the grass-root realities which meant that policy should precede legislation. This became the conviction of the CCL in relation to all legal reforms pertaining to children .In this context the decision to start an extension program was made through which policy based on bottom-up process could emerge to feed into the making of legal reforms related to universalisation of school education.
To translate this conviction into a reality a field extension program on education started its work in the Ramnagar taluk, Bidadi hobli, Bannikuppe panchayat in January 2004. As mentioned in the earlier reports the panchayat has 26 habitations in total and the program works with all these habitations. These habitations put together comprise of 1523 families with a total population of 6876 out of this 1810 are Scheduled Caste, 479 are Scheduled Tribes and 4587 belong to different backward castes and communities.
In all the habitations the program works mainly with the teachers (both anganawadi and elementary schools teachers), parents and children of the panchayat. In-depth information on education has been collected/ updated and crosschecked in all the habitations of the panchayat. The objective of the program is to provide quality education to all the children within the panchayat and draw experiences from the grassroot actors to formulate /revise existing policies and also to suggest necessary legal reforms to legislations related to children. Another important dimension of the program is related to advocacy with the education department to influence day to day works that touch the grassroot realities of the people in the state. All these are expected to feed into the process of providing equitable quality education to all children within the panchayat.
There are altogether 15 schools in the panchayat out of which 11 are LPS and 4 are HPS which also includes a high school and the program is associated with all the 15 schools. The total numbers of students in Bannikuppe panchayat are 958 out of which 668 students study in LPS, 138 in HPS and 152 in the high school. The total numbers of teachers in the panchayat are 36.
Though the program works with all 26 habitations, on a day-to-day basis it works mainly with the 15 schools in the panchayat. The program has focused on all six core issues of universlasation;
- Universal Access
- Universal Enrolment
- Universal Retention
- Universal Attainment (quality)
- Universal Participation (Community participation) and ,
- Institutional Reforms
SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES OF THE EXTENSION PROGRAM
- Ensure universal access ,enrolment and retention of all children in the Bannikuppe panchayat
- Ensure quality education in all lower and higher primary schools of the Bannikuppe panchayat
- Build a culture of accountability and connectedness among the teachers to the school they are working in
- Enable the teachers to realize the crucial role they need to play in creating man power resources for the country through effective work culture and involvement
- Make the schools in the panchayat accountable to the community and transform the government schools into centers of excellence
- Facilitate the SDMC and community to play a constructive role in the schooling of their children
- Facilitate the Gram panchayat members to play a proactive role both as community members and by strengthening the SDMC activities
- Disseminate information related to child rights to the children, teachers and parents in order to enable the children and the teachers to realize that schools primarily exist for the all round development of children.
Achievements and Contributions
As part of the field extension programme the team continues to engage with the primary stakeholders like children, teachers, parents, School Development and Monitoring Committee members, the state, NGOs and networks on the issue of Universalization of Equitable Quality School Education to all children. The main focus of all the activities is to contribute as much as possible to the process of Universalization of Equitable Quality School Education to all children in general and children of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, minorities and other disadvantaged sections in particular.
There have been significant achievements in all six core issues which have impacted the face of government education in general and the extension program in particular
- As a founder member of People's Campaign for Common School System (PCCSS) contributed significantly to the process of enacting a pro-people and pro child Central legislation to operationalise 86th Constitutional amendment Act
(Contributed significantly to the processes in making education a fundamental right in India by helping found the National Alliance for the Fundamental Right to Education (NAFRE) and organizing various consultations
Initiated the pilot extension programme "Gunathamaka Shala Shikshanakkagi Janandolana" (A Peoples' Movement for Quality Education) in Ramnagar Taluk of Bangalore Rural District
Brought out a Monograph that traces the history of legislation in education and exposes the lacunae in current legislative measures (document)
Contributed significantly in the process of policy formulation and designing the new programs and interventions to bring out of school children to main stream schooling , to ensure Community participation, to attain prescribed quality in schooling through effective and constructive Advocacy and lobbying with the State Government through campaigns, networks and consultations.
Created Model Bye-laws to place School Development Monitoring Committees (SDMC)Under Panchayath Raj Institution : Model byelaws were evolved by the Education Programme at CCL after several rounds of drafts based on participatory process and this has been notified by the Government of Karnataka in Toto and the same has been notified in the official gazette. These bye-laws give legal status to the Committee constituted by the community in order to improve the quality of education. (click here for the Full text of Model Byelaws)
- Anganwadi run by the Education Programme
The education programme, in the absence of government anganwadi, is running two balsadans in jadenhalli (18 children) and BAiragi colony (21 children) in Bangalore, both below poverty line villgages in terms of nutrition, hygiene and education. In the absence of proper nutritional support we are also providing the nutrition component to three government run anganwadis in Siddagovinapalaya (18 children), Mutturayanagudipalya (37 children) and Mutturanayapura (18 children)
After an intensive participation by 250 teachers of Ramnagar Taluk (April 2004 – December 2005) in five stages we have come out with baseline assessment tools. (BAT). The purpose of this exercise is to enable the teachers to attain a focus on competency based teaching in place of content based teaching and an assessment based on competence instead of content. Apart from generating a written product on the same we are more satisfied with the process which the teachers have indoctrinated in the course of their work with BAT. This was handed over to the Quality evaluation organization established by the Government of Karnataka.
- The programme has been able to provide tuitions to 96 SSLC students (2006) from some of the best teachers and enabled the children to acquire quality coaching and prepare and face exams effectively. Out of 96 students 60 are girls and the pass percentage in total is around 80%.
A Case Study of the Qualitative Observation of Teachers Involvement in the Schools of Bannikuppe Panchayat was conducted. The purpose of this case study was to understand the crux of the issue of providing quality education to students by examining the work culture and connectedness of the teacher to the schools they work in and the children whom they teach. This also examined the attitude and approach of the teachers towards the students in their school and analyzes their efforts in making schools a centre of excellence for the children and community. This one week case study was done through qualitative research methodology by using observation technique. To achieve the purpose of this case study research questions were framed and these were taken to all fifteen schools by three village education assistants. The fifteen schools in the panchayat were bifurcated into three clusters - comprising of five schools each. Each village education assistant was allotted five schools and all three of them spent an entire day in each of the school in their respective cluster. No questions were asked to the teacher, students, SDMC members and other visitors to the school. The three of the program staff went to the schools at 9.00 am in the morning and stayed on till 5.00pm in the evening which means that they were in the school before the teachers came in and left the premises only after all the teachers left and the schools were locked.
Research and Publications
Community and School a conversation. Click here for the document.
Dr. Niranjan Aradhya, Research Officer (Co-ordinator)