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Girls’ edu campaign in 37 VDCs in panic

The Girls’ Education Campaign initiated by District Education Office (DEO), Saptari, in 37 VDCs with financial support of Unicef is in disorder, due to the lack of monitoring.

With no one examining the project, the people involved in the drive intended at educating over 2,000 girls in the district have been found drawing their salary without fulfilling their duties. The DEO has appointed around 100 facilitators to teach young girls in the district, 13 supervisors to guide the helpers, and one programme coordinator to look after the overall progress of the campaign. Every month, the DEO spends around Rs 500,000 in salary and another Rs 500,000 in stationery purchase and organizational spending, a source said. But the campaign has not produced any marked progress worth mentioning.

When a group of journalists reached one of the teaching centers at Brahmapur VDC recently, not a single person was present. The center’s facilitator, Saroj Chaudhary, had reportedly discontinued the classes so that the students could help their families in paddy plantation.

The same situation was found at the teaching center in Bairawa VDC. “Students have not come as they are busy in plantation,” said Fulodevi Sada, one of facilitators.

When journalists demanded the daily attendance record of students, Sada said Ramesh Ram, the supervisor, had taken away the records.

District Education Officer Dik Bahadur Rai said he had no knowledge whatsoever about discontinuation of the classes. “I will enquire about this with programme coordinator Madhav Chaudhary.” Ashok Jha, Unicef rep at Saptari, refused to give any comments about complaints.

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