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POST TIME: 21 April, 2019 12:21:50 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 21 April, 2019 01:16:23 AM
School dropout
School dropout

School dropout

Bangladesh is still way behind in ensuring full enrollment as well as stopping dropout of students especially at the secondary level. The annual report of the UNFPA, the 'State of World Population Report 2019' puts the enrollment rate at 57 per cent for male children and 67 per cent for female in 2017. But in 1999, the rate was 43 per cent for girls. Though the rate is increasing steadily, this is not enough.

But it is praiseworthy that the female enrollment is 10 per cent higher than the boys. The government took different steps at different times including giving incentives such as making education free up to school level and providing free lunch to students, but the achievement has not been still up to the mark.

Taking the report of UNFPA, the state minister of education said that studies would be conducted to find out what are the reasons behind the high dropout of the male students and declared the “scientific approaches” would be taken to solve the problems. We do not know what the minister meant by scientific ways of tackling the problem, the point here is these steps have to be realistic and effective.

In Bangladesh, a country in South Asia that is making tremendous progress in terms of GDP growth, the ground reality is a large section of the population is still poor who do not have means to support their daily necessities, let alone have the ‘luxury’ of having education---to many ultra poor people affording even school education is still a matter of luxury.

When this is the scenario, we can hardly expect that dropout from school stop suddenly. One thing that is clear here is that if certain people’s affordability for receiving education does not improve, dropout problem will not improve, even if education up to school level is made compulsory, because these people have to send their children to work for earning their bread.

There is also a certain mindset problem among these people that believe that there is no necessity of having formal education in life. But their number is not significant. The hard reality is: if poverty cannot be eradicated successfully, dropout will continue to remain a problem in Bangladesh’s education.