Multiple Action Research Group (MARG)

Project Theme

Education

Target Group

Children

Project Period

01 Apr 2015 - 31 Jan 2016

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Introduction

MARG has a long history of carrying out legal capacity building training programmes. Its specific goal for this project is to increase access to Right to Education in Kaptipada block, Mayurbanj district, Orissa. The project seeks to increase access to the right to education of Muslim children in Cuttack, Odisha by increasing enrolment and retention of Muslim children in selected schools of intervention. This will be done by addressing-

  • Mindset of communities to be challenged through awareness programmes, engagement with opinion maker, community and religious leaders, media advocacy, etc. 
  • Constraints of poverty to be countered by ensuring education is actually free and there are no hidden costs, and target beneficiaries have access to schemes of education designed for them
  • Quality of schools to be improved by strengthening SMCs.

The above interventions will be at 2 levels: 

(a) Community - (children, parents, selected change agents/RTE justice workers

(b) Institutional- the State Legal Services Authorities, State Commissions for Protection of Child Rights, State Education Department and State SC/ST Department  (for implementation and  redress). 

Results to be Achieved: 

  • Schools functions effectively with regular tracking of the implementation of existing provisions under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009
  • Accessible and effective Grievance Redressal System under RTE
  • Increased knowledge and capacity among PRI representatives, SMC members and CBOs leads to strengthened collective voice around issues of RTE with communities taking ownership of schools and being actively involved in monitoring performance against RTE indicators
  • Demonstrating models of quality and inclusive education in government schools  and Government adopts improved learning and inclusive  practices in other schools

Prior Achievements:

  • Increasing access to RTE in Cuttack, particularly among students from minority communities: Baseline survey was conducted in rural and urban Cuttack to map the access to and quality of education particularly among Muslim children. A cadre of RTE justice workers was created who made important interventions ranging from increased allocation for school infrastructure to appointment of teachers. Awareness programmes were also held for the Muslim communities. An RTE Mela was also held at the state level in Bhubaneshwar to highlight issues of education of Muslims and Tribals.
  • Strengthening the functioning of Orissa State Legal Services Authority (OSLSA) and Strengthening the State Commissioner of Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) with reference to implementation of the RTE Act: The project Cuttack 2012-13 saw the joint training of RTE justice workers and the paralegal volunteers of the  District Legal Services Authority in Cuttack. Networking meetings were held with the SCPCR as well as the NCPCR representative in Odisha.  
  • Creating legal literacy materials to facilitate increased awareness on RTE Act among stakeholders: The RTE manual in English and Odia were finalised. Fliers and posters were also prepared.   
  • Trainings were also conducted for SMC members to strengthen their functioning. Workshops were also held for lawyers and law students to spread awareness on RTE issues and examine redress avenues.