What Happened to Free and Compulsory Education to the Underprivileged Children?

After almost eight years of enactment, most of the states could not fulfil their obligations yet to their children or doing so in a systematic manner.

1
What Happened to Free and Compulsory Education to the Underprivileged Children?
What Happened to Free and Compulsory Education to the Underprivileged Children?

There are 11 states and one Union Territory having sought funds from the Central Government in implementing the mandate as allowed by the rules. These states are Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Odisha, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Delhi, and Chhattisgarh. This is suggestive of the fact that after almost eight years of enactment, most of the states could not fulfill their obligations yet to their children or doing so in a systematic manner.  The debate that pertains to the improvement of the mandate’s implementation is quite healthy. However, these mandates are not usable in justifying the failure of those obligated in fulfilling constitutional mandates being settled by the Supreme Court.

The findings are field based on the digitized admission process followed in Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, and Gujarat.    

The online portals’ implementation rendered mixed results. The online school profiles’ centralized admission process and enrollments have undergone improvement in terms of transparency and administrative control. However, in Gujarat and Maharashtra, GPS-based neighborhood mapping has been used along with heavy reliance on internet, computer, and mobile phones which has created barriers to access. Accessibility is more for the dual mode system of online and offline application carried out in Rajasthan, which is also partially attempted in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.

The issues observed in all states highlights the need for accessible and responsive grievance redressal system in the pre and post admissions. There is limitation in the number of help centers, having concentrations mostly in the urban capitals and resources in supporting the children are under-supplied.  The experiences in Gujarat and Maharashtra are suggestive that collective efforts and community-led initiatives can help improving the implementation. The experience of UP and Chhattisgarh highlights the importance of contextual problem solving and importance of localized efforts, while implementing the mandate.

To conclude, it is recommended that mandate’s implementation should be improved. The source of the analysis of this project is the primary and secondary data, and experience of working first hand in trying facilitating the process of implementation. It is hoped that constitutional obligations would be fulfilled by the government. The government would also take proactive steps in helping further purposes of RTE 12(1)(c) and challenge the school education’s “hierarchies of access”.

1 COMMENT

Comments are closed.