The Ministry of Education has asked states to conduct a door-to-door survey to identify out-of-school children and prepare an action plan for their enrolment, in an effort to cope with the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on the education system.
This step would help prevent the number of drop-outs this year, the ministry said. It also recommended relaxing detention norms to address learning loss due to the coronavirus-induced shutdown of schools.
The ministry said in an official statement, “In order to mitigate the impact of challenges thrown by the COVID-19 pandemic for out of school children, it was felt necessary for every state and UT to devise a proper strategy for preventing increased dropouts, lower enrolments, loss of learning and deterioration in the gains made in providing universal access, quality, and equity in the recent years.”
It also added, “The states and UTs have been advised to carry out proper identification of Out-of-School Children (OoSC) for 6 to 18 years age group through a comprehensive door-to-door survey and prepare an action plan for their enrolment.”
The move is particularly aimed at identification, admission, and continued education of migrant children who were affected by the pandemic.
An official said, “To ensure that school-going children have access to education with quality and equity and to minimize the impact of the pandemic on school education across the country, the Ministry of Education has prepared and issued detailed guidelines on steps to be taken by the States and UTs during school closure and when the schools reopen.”
Some of the recommendations by the education ministry includes the option of classroom-on-wheels and classes in small groups at the village level, increasing the access of children to online and digital resources, use of TV and radio to reduce learning losses, easy access to the provisions of uniforms, textbooks, and mid-day meals, identifying students across different grades based on their learning levels and relaxing detention norms to prevent drop outs.
Large-scale remedial programmes and learning enhancement programmes should be held to mitigate learning loss and inequality, it recommended.
The Ministry of Education also released the guidelines for student support when schools reopen after prolonged closure like preparation and running of school readiness modules and bridge course for the initial period so that they can adjust to the school environment and do not feel stressed or left-out.
Source: India Today
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