Published: 06th October 2017
Tribal children and domestic awareness to be key focus of SCERT programme to rid Kerala's remote areas of educational backwardness
The special programme will also identify hurdles that prevent children from learning whether cognitive or socio-economic and spread awareness to prioritise education
The State Council For Educational Research and Training (SCERT) in collaboration with experts will train tribal parents to wake up early, putting aside personal issues like alcoholism and drug use and send their kids after an increasing lagging educational record.
Schools in remote and backward areas of the State are often ignored or relegated to the background, but will soon change, thanks to an innovative project named Thuna launched by the State Council For Educational Research and Training (SCERT).
The project is aimed at identifying students at the upper primary level who lag in studies and impart them with special training. Along with regular classroom instruction, teachers with this special training will help such students overcome their educational backwardness.
"The project is being implemented at two schools in Vithura grama panchayat and four schools in Chirayinkeezh grama panchayat in Thiruvananthapuram. The focus is on improving the overall quality of primary education, which is a major objective of the General Education Protection Campaign," SCERT Director J Prasad told Express.
Focus on parents: Identifying home environment as a key factor influencing the academic activity of students, especially in backward areas, the SCERT will focus on imparting awareness to parents. "We have noticed that in tribal areas, some children do not come to school as their parents wake up only after 11 am due to alcohol and substance abuse the previous night. Frequent domestic quarrels also make studies impossible at home. In such cases it is the parents and not the children who are to be given the right kind of awareness," the SCERT Director said.
Education first: Kids will be helped be classified into categories (representative image)
One such awareness class for parents, led by noted child psychiatrist Dr R Jayaprakash, will be held at Vithura Panchayat Hall on Monday. Education Minister C Raveendranath will inaugurate the programme. More such classes will be conducted in other centres in the coming days.
How it works: A group of resource teachers were selected and imparted exhaustive training by SCERT before being deployed in UP schools in Vithura and Chirayinkeezh. The trained resource teachers assess the students' character, educational standards, special talents and their family background and classify them into different categories.
Students who cannot read or write properly are encouraged to do so using pictures and stories. Special focus is also given to those students who can read or write but are not proficient enough. The students are given one to two periods of individual instruction a week. If special talents are found during training, those will be nurtured. The progress of the students is periodically recorded along with the feedback of the parents.
The functioning of the resource teachers and the progress of their work will be monitored at the panchayat level on a weekly basis. SCERT faculty and members will also conduct periodic visits to the selected schools to assess the progress. Based on the outcome of the project, its state-wide rollout will be carried out, SCERT officers said.