Children’s learning in the classroom is enhanced by activities outside the classroom and the support of their parents and community. With first generation learners, even though parents want their children to improve their career and life prospects through education, parental academic support is not available.

Eklavya has developed community based learning support systems to assist first generation learners in their studies and help them overcome their sense of alienation from the school system. These Shiksha Protsahan Kendras (SPKs) function in a predominantly tribal area where education is a relatively new input in the lives of the people.

The first centres were opened in 1999 in Shahpur block, where Eklavya had a vibrant primary education programme running from 1986 till 2001. But the demand for education is so high, and the problems children face with the existing school curriculum are so overbearing, that 29 such centres are functioning today in a single block.

These learning centres, set up with community support and mostly located in spaces provided by them, have a facilitator appointed by the community. They function for two hours in the mornings before the school begins and for a couple of hours after school ends. The evening sessions are specifically for non-school going children. The costs of running the kendras are shared by the community, through contributions from their harvest or livelihood activities, and Eklavya.

The success of the kendras is reflected in the responses of parents. ‘Our children have learned more in three months than what children learn in government schools,’ they say. This has raised the question, ‘Why is this so?’ in their minds, resulting in pressure being put on teachers in government schools to perform, and actually teach children.

Studies and Documents

Social Inequality and Educational Achievement - Shiksha Protsahan Kendra, 2010  [Read PDF: Size 1.21 MB]