THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala State Literacy Mission Authority (KSLMA) is on an ambitious project to find out the literary status of Kerala and then prepare plans to be implemented in the next five years.
According to the Census 2011, there are around 20 lakh illiterates in the state. However, there are no data to find out the status of literacy level in each district.
KSLMA has started preparing the baseline data for each district which will then be used for continuing education programme by the Authority. The data collection is being done under the leadership of director board members of the Authority.
KSLMA director Alassan Kutty P said that after collecting the data, plans would be prepared to ensure that were no Malayalee between the age of 17 and 60 who had not completed the 10th standard. The project will be implemented in three phases with examinations being conducted in standard four, seven and ten.
He also said that the syllabus for the continuing education programme would be changed by the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT). Eighty per cent of the syllabus will be from the mainstream and the rest will be based on the activities of day to day life of the people, he said.
"As more and more people from other states are migrating to Kerala, the illiteracy rate is increasing as children of these families are not sent to schools. This is one of the major threat to the Authority and a plan will be prepared to address this issue in the next Five Year Plan,’’ he said.
There are several illiteracy pockets identified in the state which include tribals, fishermen community, linguistic minorities and slum dwellers. Priority will be given to these sectors in this financial year.
However, lack of fund is still haunting the Authority in implementing the projects as the Union Government stopped funding from 2009 onwards. This year the State Government increased the share from Rs 8 crore to Rs 12 crore, which is expected to make some changes in ensuring that the literacy programme becomes a success.
The number of ‘preraks’ under KSLMA is dwindling following the Authority’s inability to pay honorarium to them after the Union Govt grant was stopped. The number of ‘preraks’ has decreased to 2,600 from 8,000.