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Southern States - Karnataka Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Midday meal scheme improves attendance

By our special correspondent

GULBARGA July 9 . The introduction of the midday meal programme last year in government schools in the seven districts under the jurisdiction of the North Karnataka Education Directorate has helped in increasing the attendance rate by five per cent during the academic year 2002-03.

Official sources said here on Wednesday that 16,41,008 children were on the rolls of the government schools in the beginning of the academic year. Though 14,55,471 children attended school in the beginning of the year, the number increased to 15,41,339 after the introduction of the midday meal programme.

The North Karnataka Education Directorate covering Gulbarga, Raichur, Bellary, Bidar, Koppal, Bijapur, and Bagalkot was established to bring down the dropout rate and to increase the attendance in government schools. Sources said Bagalkot District witnessed a record jump of 12 per cent in the attendance. However, there had been a marginal increase of two per cent in Gulbarga and Bidar districts.

The attendance in government schools in Koppal District increased by four per cent, and Raichur by five per cent. The increase was six per cent in Yadgir education district, while it was four per cent in Bellary District.

Of the 1,55,939 students admitted to the schools in Koppal District, only 1,37,828 students attended school in the beginning of the academic year. The number increased to 1,44,568 students after the midday meal programme was introduced.

In Gulbarga District, there were 2,30,838 students enrolled. Though only 2,16,930 students attended school in June, their number increased to 2,21,408 after the introduction of the scheme.

In Raichur District, 2,02,180 students were registered in schools in the beginning of the academic year. The attendance, which was 1,82,636 students, went up to 1,93,981 after the scheme was introduced there.

Only 1,61,678 students out of the 1,75,732 registered attended schools in Bidar District in the beginning of the year. With the implementation of the midday meal scheme there, their number increased to 1,65,436.

Sources said that in Yadgir education district the number of students admitted to schools was 1,82,150. However, the actual attendance was only 1,67,576 students. This increased to 1,77,196 after the scheme was introduced.

Only 2,21,300 students out of the 2,48,382 registered attended school in Bellary District in the beginning of the academic year. With the introduction of the scheme, their number increased to 2,31,431, the sources said.

In Bijapur District, the number of students enrolled was 2,50,123 in the beginning of the academic year. But only 1,95,616 students attended school then. It increased to 2,11,882 after the midday meal scheme came into force.

In Bagalkot District, the number of students admitted was 1,95,664. The attendance, which was 1,71,907 in the beginning, went up to 1,95,233 after the scheme came into being.

Now only 774 children were out of school, they added.

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