| Principal secretary, education, Amarjeet Sinha addresses the workshop in Patna on Tuesday. Picture by Jai Prakash |
Education principal secretary Amarjeet Sinha on Tuesday said child rights and education go hand in hand and inclusive education was the key to inclusive development.
Sinha was addressing a state-level workshop on child rights jointly organised by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Unicef and the state government at a city hotel.
The principal secretary said: “Without education, we cannot talk about child rights. From the time of Independence, we are talking of free education for all. The Tapas Mazumdar committee was formed to assess the plan for education for children from six to 14 years of age. According to the second round of the National Sample Survey in 1986, only 50 per cent children were enrolled in the schools. The state government is trying hard to make education available to all. In Bihar, it is a big challenge. In 2001, 26 per cent of the children were out of the school (primary education), whereas in 2013, the figure went down to 1.3 per cent.”
Sinha added: “Bihar is the only state in the country, where Mission Manav Vikas was formed to monitor the development in different areas. There are 16 to 18 indicators in this Mission Manav Vikas, and a target is set for every five years. A total of 1,800 high schools with one in every gram panchayat would be started.”
He called for inclusive development of children and said inclusive education was the key to inclusive development.
N. Vijayalakshmi, the secretary of the Bihar State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (BSCPCR), said: “Our (along with the National Commission of Protection of Child Rights) goal is to sensitise the teachers on child rights. The state commission is making efforts to come up with a policy on child rights that is helpful. The commission, in association with the panchayati raj department, would work on child rights so that maximum number of children are benefited.”
National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) chairperson Kushal Singh said: “It is important that education is provided to children because only then child rights could be implemented at the grassroots level. Teachers are considered role models of children next to parents because it plays a big role in their personality development. The child trusts the teacher blindly and it is seen that whatever the teacher says is considered correct even if the parents say that it is wrong. It is, therefore, necessary that the teachers give their best and for this, detailed knowledge of the subjects is required.”
NCPCR chairperson Singh added: “Many teachers, when asked about child rights, are unable to give answers. So workshops are organised. Bihar is doing a lot in the field of education.”