A survey on the implementation of Right to Education Act, two years after the statute came into force, has revealed that several schools in the state lack basic infrastructure.
Non-government organisations Association for Promotion of Creative Learning (APCL) and ActionAid found that 6,419 schools in Bihar don’t have their own buildings, 42,043 have no toilets, 47,813 don’t have playgrounds, 67,249 don’t have electricity and 4,912 schools don’t have hand pumps.
The findings were compiled in a book, Shikshadhikar Choupal Ke Bahas Mein, that was released by Vijoy Prakash, principal secretary, planning and development at a programme at AN Sinha Institute of Social Studies on Tuesday.
Prakash said: “The survey found that students of government schools in the state neither get scholarship money on time nor funds to buy uniform. Students thereby lose motivation. This is one of the biggest reasons for which they drop out. Around 42.5 per cent children drop out between classes I and V and 58.8 per cent between classes I and VIII. This shows children do not receive fair treatment in elementary schools. Absence of basic infrastructure in schools could be blamed for the trend too.”
Mridula Prakash, the executive director of APCL, said the condition of Kasturba Gandhi residential schools was grim.
“Kasturba Gandhi residential schools running for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe children are facing problems too. Around 40 per cent posts of full-time teachers and 23 per cent posts of wardens are vacant in Kasturba Gandhi residential schools. The state government should seriously think on these issues if it really wants to achieve the goals of Right to Education Act,” she said.