Documents of ADATS - Book 5

Strategic Plan - Coolie Children (May 2019)

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For 35 years, the Coolie Sangha had run a largely self-financed Children's Programme that benefited over 62,024 children. 70% of them completed 10 years of schooling. From a horrible baseline where not a single Dalit or Tribal child ever crossed three years of school, more than 90% of school-age children in the 5-16 age group were retained for 10 full years. The bedrock of this effort was Mothers empowered to care for their children's all-round development, including schooling and education.

In 2014, this programme was discontinued. A project discipline that ensured timely and repetitive actions with quality and consistency was soon lost. Mahila Meetings stopped exercising vigil and political control over schools. Political touts were quick to infiltrate School Development Management Committees and dip into substantial State allocations for village schools. Mothers lost control of their children's education. Corruption followed and, for the past 3-4 years, student entitlements have not reached on time. Supply of school essentials have totally stopped in smaller, remote villages.

The Coolie Sangha has now decided to restart this programme after a 4-year gap, with leadership, direction, resources and professional expertise provided by ADATS to develop pertinent and effective interventions that identify and fill gaps in their children's education.