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Maharashtra to create online drop box to curb drop outs

Mumbai schools raise objections, say it will create confusion and only add to the teachers’ workload

mumbai Updated: Aug 30, 2017 19:57 IST
Puja Pednekar
Puja Pednekar
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Maharashtra,drop box
Schools are worried that entering data into the drop box daily will only increase teachers’ workload. (Representational photo/HT )

The Maharashtra State Council for Educational Research and Training (MSCERT) has decided to create an online drop box that will have names of students remaining absent for more than 30 days at a stretch.

Officials said the decision was taken to bring down the number of students dropping out from schools.

Though the department first announced the initiative on August 17, a government resolution (GR) to implement it was issued on Monday.

As per the circular issued by Suvarna Kharat, deputy secretary of the department, the drop box will be part of government’s online database, SARAL, and will help it in early identification and tracking of drop outs.

“In the interiors of Maharashtra, children often remain absent from school for months to help their families in fields or migrate to other states in search of work. We hope to identify such students through this programme,” said Kharat

However, city schools raised objections saying this will create confusion and add to the teachers’ workload.

“The government is good at collecting data, but it is unable to manage it. The success of this initiative depends on how the data is managed, or else it will only add to the confusion,” said Rohan Bhat, chairperson, Children’s Academy Group of Schools, Kandivli and Malad.

Schools are worried that entering data into the drop box daily will only increase teachers’ workload.

“When SARAL was first introduced, our teachers were asked to upload students’ details online. Many of them missed classes to complete the given work,” said Father Francis Swamy, principal of St Mary’s School, Mazagaon, and joint director of Archdiocesan Board of Education.

First Published: Aug 30, 2017 19:57 IST