Bhubaneswar: Free Mid-Day Meals and supply of free textbooks and uniforms notwithstanding, the rate of student enrollment in primary schools continues to dwindle across the state while the rate of dropouts is the other area of concern as well.
Around 9,127 children have never enrolled for primary education while over 33,000 children have dropped out of primary schools which means hanging books and notebooks for the rest part of life.
Although, a special enrollment drive was launched by the government in April to increase admissions in the primary schools, it did not deliver the desired results, admitted the School and Mass Education Minister Badri Narayan Patra and Secretary Ranjana Chopra after a review meeting held at the secretariat here.
In view of the failed circumstances, the department has decided to start the campaign from August 15 till August 31 once again.
At the review meeting it was revealed that 9,127 children have never been enrolled in the schools while 13, 230 students dropped out of schools midway and as many as 19,299 students quit studies due to relocation of schools.
The situation was most alarming in tribal dominated districts like Nuapada, Balangir, Malkangiri, Koraput, Nabarangpur, Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada, Boudh, Mayurbhanj and Kandhamal.
It was found out that school uniforms have been supplied to students of only eight districts though one month has lapsed since schools reopened after the summer vacation. In some other districts hardly 40 percent students have been provided with school uniforms.