We select a complete administrative unit, usually a block, as our area of operation, to bring in large-scale reforms and engage all actors in the school education ecosystem. This also gives us an advocacy advantage in influencing the education system.
Our programme strategy has four key focus areas – Universal Access and Participation, Quality Learning, Improved Governance and Enhancing Capacities of government teachers and other functionaries.
- Access : We ensure that all children are enrolled in school and are attending it regularly. Out-of-school children are identified through a household census and brought into our residential and non-residential bridging programmes, and eventually, mainstreamed into age-appropriate grades in government schools. We monitor transition from primary to upper primary and then to secondary schools, ensuring all children complete grade 10.
- Learning : Our Learning Enrichment Programme is designed to address the learning needs of first-generation learners. Self-directed learning and school completion are the end goal for each child. In our programme, we stress upon six aspects of learning — planning, teacher learning material, pupil organisation, classroom culture, classroom transaction and assessment. We set up Community Education Resource Centers that are equipped with computers, printers, projectors, books, periodicals and audio-visual material. Children and adults utilise the facility to learn computer programmes, undertake e-learning, browse the net, watch socially relevant films etc. Digital technology is used both for upgrading the quality of transactions in the classrooms and for training teachers. Often, children speak a different language from the one used in school. Therefore, we make a conscious effort to include local cultural practices, languages and knowledge into the formal education systems.
- Governance :To improve school functioning and governance, we orient and train School Management Committee members, headmasters and government teachers. We assist the set-up of voluntary committees called Child Rights Protection Forum to protect the rights of children and bring the school and community together.
- Capacity Enhancement of Government Teachers : We train and support government teachers, block resource coordinators and District Institute of Education and Training members to use our learning and teaching methodology and materials. This results in greater engagement of both teachers and children, thereby, enhancing the quality of learning.