All the 13 students of NCLP (National Child Labour Project) schools, who had appeared for the SSLC and Plus Two public examinations, have secured pass marks.
Last year, 30 students received government funding for pursuing higher education. For this year, the funding would be provided shortly, official sources said.
Nine non-government organisations are managing the NCLP schools at 25 locations with an overall enrolment of 737 students. Under the NCLP scheme, a sequential approach is being adopted to rehabilitate children working in hazardous occupations and processes.
The children in 9 to 14 years age group are withdrawn from the occupations and enrolled in the NCLP schools, known as Special Training Centres where they are provided bridge education, vocational training, mid-day meal, stipend, healthcare and recreation, before being mainstreamed into the formal system of education.
Under the revised guidelines, convergence of services provided by different government departments and agencies for the benefit of child and their family must be ensured. NGOs working with the child labourers have welcomed the revised guidelines, saying an enabling environment must motivate children to study by necessarily providing their households with alternatives to improve income level.
The revised guideline is of particular significance in Erode district where children enrolled in such special schools in remote parts of Hasanur, Kadambur and Bargur hills find themselves in a helpless situation and accompany parents to work in agricultural fields during harvest season.
On Friday, a rally was taken out by students of Government Girls’ Higher Secondary School and CSI Girls’ Higher Secondary School for curbing the system of child labour.
The students raised slogans highlighting the scope for socio-economic growth and empowerment of poor families through educational development of the upcoming generation.
Chief Educational Officer P. Ayyannan, NCLP Project Director P. Paneerselvam, Erode RDO Narmada Devi, and other senior officials took part in the rally initiated by District Collector S. Prabakar.
Subsequently, an oath to eradicate child labour was administered on the Collectorate premises, with the participation of District Revenue Officer R. Sathish and other senior officials and employees.