Prajayatna’s work can be broadly grouped under the areas of Education Governance, Learning and Early Child Care and Education (ECCE).
In education governance, Prajayatna works with all stakeholders to ensure that schools are managed effectively. In learning, the focus is on ensuring that the schools contribute towards the development of capabilities in children through an integrated and child-centric approach.
Similar to the approach with schools, Prajayatna’s work with the Anganwadis – Early Child Care Centers managed by the WCD, aims at improving quality in all aspects of these pre-school centres.
Work on Disability
Free and compulsory education was made a fundamental right (and an integral part of Right to Life and Personal Liberty under Article 21) of all the children belonging to the 6-14 years age group through the 86th amendment to the Constitution of India. Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009 further recognizes this right and states that education for children of the above-mentioned age group, including those who have dropped out or face issues in admission due to migration, caste, disability, and so on, should be free and compulsory.
SSA provides up to Rs.3000/- per child for the inclusion of disabled children, as per specific proposal, per year, with Rs. 1000/- ear-marked exclusively for engagement of resource teachers. The interventions under SSA for inclusive education are identification, functional and formal assessment, appropriate educational placement, preparation of Individualized Educational Plan, provision of aids and appliances, teacher training, resource support, removal of architectural barriers, research, monitoring and evaluation and a special focus on girls with Disability. The zero rejection policy adopted by the program strives to ensure that every child with Disability, irrespective of the kind, category and degree of disability, is provided meaningful and quality education.
In the process of working with the schools, it was seen that a majority of the children being left out of the education system in the present scenario, were those children with disabilities. In its quest to ensure that all children have access to quality education, it was seen that these children, despite Right to Education were being completely marginalized. The work of Prajayatna in the fields has suggested that in spite of all the well-intended policies and attempts, the program suffers from lack of quality intervention on the ground due to reasons that vary over a wide spectrum that includes socio-religious aspects, lack of awareness and enthusiasm on the part of both community and government officials (including teachers) to lack of resources or lack of their proper utilization. Prajayatna, as a result, has started ensuring that the issues that children with disabilities are facing are addressed through it various processes at every level.
In governance, it is to ensure that the needs of the children are addressed through the existing structures of the Gram Panchayat and that the SMC ensures that the schools are a conducive place for all children. Similarly, it is seen that Kalikayatna becomes truly inclusive in its approach.