Three Years of DPEP: Assessment and Challenges
Published by Educational Consultants India Ltd., 1998, New Delhi.
IMPACT OF DPEP
Evidence of DPEP leaving an impact upon the whole primary education system.
Some states have decided to extend the new curriculum and textbooks developed under DPEP to non-DPEP areas as well.
Alternative Schools have been set up in some non DPEP districts based on the experimentation and experiences of DPEP.
Academic and technical support structures and mechanisms trailed by DPEP districts have also been set up in some non-DPEP districts.
DPEP has been able to fill teacher vacancies and rationalize teacher deployment.
In some cases, DPEP interventions have resulted in children shifting from private, unaided schools to Government schools.
Successful community awareness and mobilization campaigns under DPEP have contributed to significant, accelerated ncrease in enrolment, especially of girls.
Enrolment of girls has been higher in DPEP districts as compared to the non-DPEP districts.
Gender and social inequities have reduced to a substantial level.
Increased learning achievements can be seen.
DPEP has increased research activity in the areas of primary education.
DPEP has supported the development of rich data resource including the EMIS and PMIS, school mapping and baseline studies to facilitate research, guide ongoing implementation as well as to facilitate planning and design of intervention strategies. This has led to increased recognition of the contribution of research, monitoring and evaluation and impact assessment to the implementation of the DPEP.
The incremental increase in enrolment during 1993-96, over the increase in non DPEP districts has been encouraging in Assam, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
Repeaters rate has dropped considerably between 1995 and 1996.
Index of gender and social equity shows considerable improvement.
A study on learners Achievement was conducted in all the seven DPEP-I States before starting the project in 1994 and also in 1997. Complete information is available in respect of five of the states. It is seen that learning scores of Class I students in all project districts have improved substantially over the baseline measured about three years ago, both in language and mathematics. The study also reveals improvement among children of classes III and IV.
VECs are in place in all and there is evidence of their involvement with community mobilization, construction activities local resource generation, running ECCE and Alternative Schooling (AS) Centres utilisation of school grant etc.
Better functioning of the VECs is seen wherever women members are active or the leadership is vested with women and where there is strong interface with other grassroots organizations and institutions.
Women participation in activities through VECs and other village-based organizations launched by DPEP or Mahila Samakhya has been influential in focussing on the needs of girls.
Instances to overt gender bias in textbooks have been reduced and an integrated approach to gender sensitization has received a better response.
The alternative models of ECCE in Assam and Madhya Pradesh have positively impacted on the children in terms of their confidence level, actively level, personal grooming etc. The demand for opening new centres is visible; a valid indicator of positive impact.
Synchronization of timings experimented with in Anganwadi Centres in Karnataka have facilitated girls participation in primary education.
Enrolment of children in primary school has been positively influenced by the ECCE Centres. Teachers agree that children coming from the ECCE Centres are more regular, participate more in activities and come cleaner to school.
The sub-district academic support structures are in place and the initial steps taken to develop them into resources centres are showing results. The teachers of primary schools now have access to on-site academic support.
The programme created additional facilities by building 4736 schools, 6303 classrooms, besides 6128 toilets and 2859 drinking water sources. Repair work has been undertaken in 3145 structures.
The physical infrastructure of primary education has improved with the provision of new schools, new buildings for schools where none existed, additional classrooms, toilets and drinking water, repair facilities.
The school and Teacher Grants are becoming vehicles for teacher empowerment and community empowerment on school matters. The relationship between schools and community has been strengthened as the school grant has played a pivotal role in involving the community/VEC members.
The teacher grant has helped in reinforcing the confidence of the teaching community to improve the educational standards prevalent in schools.