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Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan Cuts Dropouts Promotes Convergence

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Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan Cuts Dropouts
There has been a significant reduction in number of out of school children in the country following the inception of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

The number of out of school children in the age group of 6 to 14 has come down to 30 lakhs in 2012. It was 80 lakhs in 2009.

The scheme is a flagship programme of the Central Government for achievement of universalization of elementary education in a time bound manner. It is mandated by a constitution amendment making free and compulsory education to the children of 6 to 14 years of age group a fundamental right.

Under the Scheme to promote education for all, more than one lakh 95 thousand primary schools and more than one lakh upper primary schools have been sanctioned. About 20 lakh teachers' posts have been sanctioned under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan since inception of the scheme.

To improve infrastructure in the school about 18 lakhs additional classrooms have been sanctioned and about 2 lakh 30 thousand drinking water projects have been approved. Steps have also been taken to provide over eight-and-a half lakh toilets in the schools so that students can have access to proper sanitation.

Net enrollment ratio at the primary level has been achieved at 99.8 per cent. It has also led to gender parity index at primary level of one.

The scheme supports about 20 crore children in about 14 lakh schools in the country with special focus on disadvantaged sections such as SC/ST and Minorities, particularly girls.

Under the Scheme, nearly 3 lakh 60 thousand girls are studying in over 3500 Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas. These are residential schools for girls for class VI to VIII in the educationally backward blocks of India.

Of them, 29 per cent are SCs, 26 per cent STs, 26 per cent OBCs, 9 per cent Muslims and 10 per cent belonging to BPL families. The Scheme along with other initiatives of the Government including Mid Day Meal has helped in checking dropouts of the kids particularly the girl child.

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