Measures Stepped Up To Prevent School Dropouts In Odisha

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Bhubaneswar: Taking note of the prolonged absence of the students of Class IX and X since the reopening of physical classes, the Odisha government has stepped up measures to ensure zero dropouts.

Sources in the School and Mass Education department said while the reopening of the primary and upper primary schools has not been decided, a bulk of students of Class IX and X have remained absent from the physical classes that have reopened since February 8 and January 8 respectively.
Concerned over the absence of these students, the department has begun a ground study to ascertain the cause.

A senior official of the department told the media on condition of anonymity that as the primary and upper primary schools have remained closed since March last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, no decision has been taken so far for the reopening of these schools.

He said as there is a possibility that some primary and upper primary students might give up their study in the midway, instructions have been given to the headmasters, Cluster Resource Centre Coordinators (CRCCs) and Block Education Officers (BEOs) to ensure that there will be no dropout.

Apart from this, the department has issued the following instructions:

After the reopening of the primary and upper primary schools, the headmasters and headmistresses will prepare a 60-day attendance list of the students (whose schools have been merged with nearby government schools) and submit it either to the BEO or District Education Officers (DEO) with their detailed address and date of admission.

After receiving the data of these students at the block and district level, the BEOs and DEOs will send the list to state government for a thorough review.

To ensure zero dropouts of students, the Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water department has been asked to ensure the basic infrastructure requirements of the composite schools like additional rooms, tables and benches in coordination with the Block Development Officers (BDO) and the District Welfare Officers (DWO).

The composite schools have been asked to reconstitute the School Management Committee (SMC) within 45 days of the reopening of the schools and ensure that the parents and guardians will send their children to the schools on regular basis.

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