The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Green card route back to school

Calcutta, Aug. 22: For the first time in its 25-years, the Left Front government will issue cards to the guardians of children who have discontinued school education with an eye on bringing them back.

All the schools in the state have been asked to conduct surveys in their areas to find out the exact number of school dropouts.

The guardians who get the “green cards” would be eligible to readmit their wards to schools in their areas. They would only have to submit the cards to the school authorities.

The government’s efforts to bring back the school dropouts is part of its decision to implement the universal elementary education programme, popularly known as Sarba Siksha Abhijan.

Children in the age group of five to eight years will be “brought back” during the current academic session.

Most government-sponsored schools had conducted surveys in their areas to find out the number of dropouts on July 25 and 26. They submitted the reports to the school education department.

During their surveys, the schoolteachers distributed the cards to guardians.

The teachers will conduct their second round of surveys on August 26 and 27 to identify the number of children in the age group of 9 and 13 who had left schools.

The cards would be issued to the guardians following interviews with the teachers. By August 31, the government would like to see these children return to schools.

The guardians with green cards will be entitled to meet the school authorities on August 29 and 31.

School education minister Kanti Biswas told The Telegraph that the government has decided to set up village education committees and ward education committees in municipal areas across the state.

These local panels will help the government prepare a register with details about the children who have left schools and will cite the reasons for their dropping out.

“We want to involve the people’s representatives, panchayats, municipalities, different private organisations and local clubs in our move to provide education to every child in the state,” Biswas said.

He added that the government plans to increase the number of pre-primary schools to ease the infants’ access to education in government-run institutions.

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