STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Improving Andhra Pradesh’s literacy rate

The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday launched its flagship scheme, Amma Vodi, to increase enrolment in schools and junior colleges with the long-term objective of making the state 100% literate.

Published: 10th January 2020 04:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th January 2020 08:29 AM   |  A+A-

CM Jagan Mohan Reddy greets children at PVKN College in Chittoor on Thursday.

CM Jagan Mohan Reddy greets children at PVKN College in Chittoor on Thursday. (Photo| EPS/Madhav K)

The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday launched its flagship scheme, Amma Vodi, to increase enrolment in schools and junior colleges with the long-term objective of making the state 100% literate. It is unique compared to schemes implemented by earlier governments in that it incentivises women from BPL families to send their children to school as it seeks to address one of the main reasons for the high school dropout ratio, which is poverty. Every mother is paid Rs 15,000 per annum so that she need not send her child to work to help sustain the family.

The enrolment ratio in Andhra Pradesh is around 83%, which is much lower than the national average. Simultaneously, the dropout ratio is high. The net result is that the state’s literacy rate is 61%, the lowest in the country. The worst part of it is that as per the Comptroller and Auditor General’s report, the state doesn’t even have a proper system in place to track school dropouts.

If we see these stats in combination with the NITI Aayog’s School Education Quality Index, on which the state ranks 11th, we get the full picture. Amma Vodi, which benefits 43 lakh families comprising over 81 lakh children, will have to be supplemented by a number of other steps if it is to succeed, since money alone cannot solve the problem. Once the scheme was announced last year, there was a 40% spike in admissions, but in the absence of proper infrastructure, enough number of teachers, and an environment and culture that encourage children to study, we will go back to square one.

The government is keen on improving infrastructure through its Naadu-Nedu (Then and Now) programme and recruitment of teachers.  As it presses forward, it must keep in mind similar initiatives taken up by its predecessors that went in vain. A better way to ensure success is to make parents and panchayats stakeholders. In this respect, it could learn from the Kerala model where panchayats play a role in monitoring the functioning of schools.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp