Adolescent girls demand extension of Right to Education Act in Kokrajhar
On the occasion of celebration of International Day of Education under the aegis of Nedan Foundation, an NGO of Kokrajhar, adolescent girls demanded that the (RTE) Act, 2009 should be extended for the interest of education to all.
KOKRAJHAR: On the occasion of celebration of International Day of Education on Tuesday under the aegis of Nedan Foundation, an NGO of Kokrajhar, adolescent girls demanded that the Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009 should be extended for the interest of education to all. The girls said, "If the education is made free and compulsory up to 12th standard, many of us, who drop out due to not being able to afford private school fees or unavailability of government school nearby beyond 8th standard, will be able to complete our schooling."
On the occasion of the International Day of Education on Tuesday, which is also celebrated as the National Girls' Child Day in India, the Nedan Foundation and NERSWN NGOs held discussion on 'Champions for Girls' Education', a network of organizations working with a larger goal to expand and improve education systems and increase gender sensitivity in education budgets at the secondary level along with improvement in quality education and challenging discriminatory social norms in Kokrajhar.
Champions for Girls' Education are supporting girls to share a demand for the extension of the Right to Education Act up to class 12. 3000 girls in 209 villages in Kokrajhar district plan to get together as a part of the signature campaign and to send postcards with their appeal/demand to the Chief Minister of Assam and Chief Executive Member of BTC. The campaign was launched at Destination Girls' Home, Onthaigwlao in Kokrajhar and around 150 girls have signed the postcards on the occasion. The girls will also assemble at BTC Secretariat and hand over postcards directly to the CEM of BTR and also in Kokrajhar Post Office, Kochugaon Post Office, Bishmuri Post Office to dispatch postcards together as a sign of solidarity in their appeal/demands.
This is part of a bigger postcard signature campaign being organized by the member organizations of the 'Champions for Girls Education' in Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and Uttar Pradesh in which close to 1 lakh girls will participate from several districts. Apart from the extension of RTE, the girls are also demanding timely availability and a simplified process of scholarships, safety and security within and outside school and the unavailability of teachers. Earlier, this month consultations with girls were conducted in Kokrajhar district. The consultations provided a platform for girls to share their problems, voice their opinions, raise awareness of their challenges in accessing education, and articulate their demands. They also planned to take these demands to the local authorities/public representatives/ candidates from different political parties to ensure their voices are heard.
As the State is going into the process of the Annual Work Plan & Budget for the FY 2023-24, it will be pertinent to consider the demand/appeals from adolescent girls to strengthen schools at all levels so that twelve years of quality and inclusive education becomes a reality for every girl in the State.
The National Education Policy (NEP) envisions a process of universalizing secondary education. Some of the relevant strands include the redesigning of the assessment standards, the expansion of National and State Open Schools and the expansion of vocational education.