KOHIMA: Four times above the national average of 4.3 per cent, the student dropout out rate in Nagaland primary schools, in Grade I-V, stood at 19.4 per cent making the state the highest school dropout rate in the country.
This data was presented by Community Avenue Network (CAN) Youth of Nagaland Chief Functionary Jenpu Rongmei during the launching programme of "My Scholarship Foundation" at Tourist Lodge in Dimapur yesterday.
He informed that as per survey conducted by the World Bank, the dropout rate in the upper primary (VI-VIII) and the secondary (IX-X) too stood at 17.7 per cent and 35.1 per cent respectively.
He also said that a similar study conducted by the Government of Nagaland for the year 2007-2009 showed that 8,495 students dropped out among 11,948 students in 554 Government Schools.
Jenpu said that CAN Youth with the support of Bosco Institute in Jorhat carried out a similar study in Dimapur and found that 57 per cent of the students dropped out in high school while 32 per cent dropped out in middle school and 11 per cent dropped out before reaching middle school.
Talking about the My Scholarship Foundation (MSF), Jenpu said the objective was to bring all likeminded communities and civil societies together to bring back those dropouts back to school.
He expressed the hope that contributions from various individuals and communities would help bring back smile on the faces of those school children being dropped out.
He said the MSF would first target 50 children to get back to school and added that the CAN Youth had supported 28 students so far and would cover the entire state gradually.
"Towards this objective, we need strong support of every section of the society especially the students' unions and we urge the NGOs to help start this campaign," he appealed.
Speaking as the Special Guest, Elis Swu, General Secretary of Naga Women Hoho Dimapur, who launched the MSF campaign, called for the need to impart quality education and not focus just on scoring marks.
She also observed that dropout rates were higher in Government schools and called for a concerted effort to bring down the level of dropout rate.