Project information

Pre-Primary Education in West Bengal

We are supporting 6 pre-primary schools in rural West Bengal. These communities are some of the most disadvantaged in India. The schools give an all-round educational experience developing a school-going habit. The teachers are local women who acquire status and income for their needy families.

December 2012 - December 2013

Charity information: Youth Education Service Limited

Youth Education Service Limited logo
  • Need

    Need

    With no early pre-school opportunity, certain problems could arise. The students will go to work in the fields with their mothers so no school-going habit will be established, maybe leading to school drop-out in later years Alternative state run pre-school centres often have poorly trained staff and offer low quality education. There is little scope for working women outside the home. Some malnutrition is evident in the students.

    Solution

    The schools are open 6 days a week for 3 hours giving mothers an opportunity to work alone in the fields. The schools offer the students a child-centred interesting rounded curriculum that they will wish to attend. The caring staff are experienced local teachers who are trained to teach all areas of the curriculum. The students receive a nutritious daily midday meal.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To offer a caring stimulating environment for young children.

    Activities

    » Regular teachers’ training updates with new ideasWeekly visits from the supervisor
    » Weekly visits from the supervisor

    Success will be...
    Paid supervisor visits and keeps records to report back to the accountant
    Happy children and good attendance


    Aim 2

    To encourage regular school-going habit.

    Activities

    » Schools open reliably 3 hours daily
    » Teachers ensure that schools are attractive places to be
    » Regular parent-teacher contact

    Success will be...
    Paid supervisor checks daily opening of schools
    Monthly parent-teacher meetings, run by supervisor
    Teachers visit children’s homes


    Aim 3

    To release the parents to work in the fields.

    Activities

    » Schools open reliably
    » Regular parent-teacher contact

    Success will be...
    Monthly meetings and home visit to ensure parents’ confidence
    Weekly supervisor checks daily opening of schools


    Aim 4

    To prepare the children for primary school.

    Activities

    » Regular update of teaching skills
    » Regular contact with primary school staff
    » Pre-primary teachers check primary curriculum

    Success will be...
    All teachers meet to discuss if learning materials are appropriate
    Follow up visit to primary school when students move up


    Aim 5

    To provide a nutritious midday meal.

    Activities

    » Assistant teachers shop for and prepare meals
    » Low priced nutritious food used

    Success will be...
    Less evidence of malnutrition
    Teachers use local knowledge when buying and cooking food


  • Impact

    Impact

    The teachers keep an attendance record for each school and the supervisor will notice if the number of students is increasing. The primary teachers will report back to the pre-primary centres if they are happy with the students that they receive. The parents will make their comments at the regular school meetings. Their financial contributions will be regular if they are satisfied

    Risk

    Local politics may be volatile and cause the closure of the schools. Competition from other schools. It is necessary for the financial viability of the schools that the numbers are constant or increasing.
    Dealing with the risks - Regular parental meetings that will encourage the support and understanding of the aims of the schools in the community. The aim is that the community will pull together to support the schools because they value them. The schools are caring and welcoming places and are

    Reporting

    Donors receive an annual newsletter reporting the latest happenings in the schools that is written following the annual visit of Maggie Flanagan. The accountants’ report is written annually and is available if requested.
    Maggie Flanagan is always happy to discuss the progress of the schools.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £4,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £1,728 Teachers 12 teachers salaries at £12 per month per teacher
      £720 Assistant teachers 6 assistant teachers at £10 per month per assistant
      £472 School supervisor Salary and expenses of school supervisor
      £720 Resources Teaching materials £60 per school per month
      £360 Food Midday meals, £30 per month for 6 schools

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Charitable Trusts £500 Guaranteed
  • Background

    Location

    The schools are in the district of Midnapore about 200 miles south-west of Kolkata in West Bengal. It is a lush, tropical environment with banana, coconut and mango trees and many dug ponds for fish cultivation. The rural communities are poor, growing mostly paddy and some vegetables. They are mixed Hindu and Moslem faith, and some tribal children. Their culture is rich with many festivals and celebrations from the different faiths.

    Beneficiaries

    The children will benefit because they have the daily experience of a cheerful daily stimulating school environment. This will give them a good start in their lives and a positive attitude towards future education. The women are trained, giving them status in the village and a regular income. The parents are free to go to work in the fields, knowing that their children are well cared for.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Because it is run by people who have lived in the villages that use the schools and who understand the needs of the families and the challenges that they face daily. We have built a rapport with the teachers that helps us to ensure the smooth running of the schools. The teachers’ training is given by people who are experienced in pre-primary education and/or have knowledge of Bengali culture.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.

    People

    Maggie Flanagan

    An English teacher who has given the teachers training and support. She worked and lived with them for two years and annually gives extra training.

    Kundan Kumar Ghosh

    A local English-speaking Bengali man who has experience working as an accountant for many NGOs. He understands the needs and challenges faced.

    Koustav Samai

    An educated local man who supervises running of the schools through regular visits. Teachers request their materials from him and discuss problems.

£12

will pay a teacher’s salary for one month

“My daughter loves daily singing and dancing”

A parent