Tuesday 07 July, 2020

Education in exchange of Meals

Education in exchange of Meals

Schools authority claims the normal practice is to put means on the books or school bag.I was imporessed with what school is doing to promote attendance. However, I was schoked to see meal distribution system in School.

Himali Primary School in located in Pandusen village, which is five hours walking distance from district headquarter of Bajura. This school is providing free meal to the students to encourage attendance. All students belong to primary class are entitled to get school meal during the break. I was there to interact with students and teachers on looking at how school is providing education to the children. I was impressed when headteacher informed me that school is providing lunch to the students, which have improved attendance. I was impressed with what school is doing to promote attendance. However, I was shocked to see meal distribution system in school.

During the lunchtime, all students queued up for meal but there is no plates orsomething to put meal (Litto). So majority of students opened their school bags and take out one of the book to get their meal. Some of the students opened their bags for school meal. Once they did, I asked school management about why students are taking food in either textbooks or in school bags? Among others, I was worried about health implications of this system. The school authority told me that this is normal practice to put meal on the books or school bags since the meal program was started. I asked them what will happen to their text book and bags after sometime. They all agree it would not be usable. I also ask them why they are not getting food on plate. They said school do not have resources to buy plates and INGOs who are also aware of the problem is not supporting this because this is not under their project logframe activities. It makes me think twice how on earth we are running programs like this ? Why even such a small initiative with huge impact was not done by those who are claiming that they are doing something for education. It does not make sense to say that they are not helping to buy plates as it in not in INGOs project activities. It looks so absurd. I do not know what is the current situation those children in Himali school in Bajura.

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