Notice issued to parents of school dropouts

In an alarming development that comes under the heels of Delhi High Court terming the wihdrawal of a child from school as a criminal offense and forcing enrollment, parents of non-schooling children in Mysuru district have got legal notices from the Education Department. Parents are already feeling the tightening noose in some cases. H.S. NARASIMHA KUMAR reports in the Hindu (December 7, 2014)

Over 5,921 children have been identified as school dropouts in Mysuru district this academic year

The Education Department has served notices to 699 parents in Mysuru district asking them to send their children to school, failing which cases will be booked against them under the Right to Education Act.

Similarly, the department is planning to send out more such notices in the next few days in a bid to reduce the number of school dropouts in the district.

Over 5,921 children have been identified as school dropouts in Mysuru district in 2014-15, 3,220 boys and 2,701 girls.

Mysuru North stands ranks first in the list of dropouts, followed by Nanjangud (898), Hunsur (771), and H.D. Kote (741).

Mysuru Rural accounts for 673 dropouts, Periyapatna (453), T. Narsipur (452), and K.R. Nagar (297).

Repeated appeals by the Education Department to parents to send back their children to school had failed to yield any result.

The government has made compulsory education for children in aged 6 to 14 and has decided not to fail any student till the ninth grade in a bid to encourage them to pursue education.

The department wonders why there dropouts when the government was providing facilities such as midday meals, milk, textbooks, and learning materials to students.

An informal survey by the department points out that many parents particularly where Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and minorities were residing, were yet to realise the importance of educating their children.

Chandra Patil, deputy project coordinator, Sarva Shikshana Abhiyana, Mysuru district, said the government had appointed attendance authority at the hobli-level.

Mr. Patil said that of the 5,921 dropouts, the Education Department had brought back 2,855 children, including 1,606 boys and 1,249 girls, this year.

He said no parent had the right to deprive their children of basic education and it was every child’s fundamental right.

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