Badi children out of school, repeat grades

  • Enrolled but absent
Badi children out of school, repeat grades

Dec 31, 2014-

Despite easy access to both private and community schools, most children from a Badi settlement at Gokuleshwor-4 in Darchula district do not go to school. Only 50 Badi children aged between six and 16 have been enrolled in school, but they, too, do not attend classes regularly.

Due to their failure to meet the required attendance, these children cannot sit exams and, therefore, cannot pass the grade. Only three children have made it till the lower secondary level, while students aged 13-14 are repeating the same grades that they were in the previous year and the year before that. There are 33 Badi families in the settlement, more than half the members in each household illiterate.

“Despite requesting the parents to send their children to school, the scenario has not changed” says a local school teacher.

Most Badi families do not own land. They make their living as daily wage workers. Most women crush stones and haul sand from riverbanks, accompanied by their children, while men work as porters. Similarly, most of the young adults from the Badi settlement have gone to India for work.

Each family has at least six members, some have up to 14 members.  “It is very difficult to feed the family by the earning of only one or two members. In order to survive, every one in the family has to work and children are not an exception, says Mukuti Badi.

Since most family members are engaged in some kind of job, Mukuti said the children cannot go to shcool, though it is virtually on our doorsteps.

To send the children to school, the Badi people have said the government should offer them better facilities and income generating programmes.

Published: 01-01-2015 08:58

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