August 20, 2022
Education Problems in Slum Areas - How Can We Solve
The existence of slums is not confined to India but is prevalent throughout the world including in countries like China, Japan, Korea, and so on. In this research, the main goal is to identify the educational opportunities available to children living in slums in India. The lifestyle of these people and how education influences their lives.
There are several areas in this research paper that have been highlighted, including the existence of slums and their population, the difficulties the children of the slum face in achieving elementary education, the significance of education for the children of the slum, the objectives for supporting education among the children of the slums, and the factors affecting the availability and demand for education within the slums.
A very underdeveloped and deprived state exists in slum areas in India, and those who reside in these areas referred to as slum children, are said to be the most marginalized, deprived, and weaker members of society.
They are isolated from different parts of society and from their community as a whole. People residing in slum areas may sometimes be fortunate enough to find jobs as domestic helpers, construction workers, and laborers to earn a living.
While slum children lack knowledge of education's importance and meaning, this paper will examine the education of slum children.
Educational problems faced by children in slum areas:
- There is a need for additional private coaching support due to the poor quality of education in schools.
- It's the lack of proper attention span and irregularities in class and school (for attendance and homework) that cause the most problems.
- Some of them watch TV with their parents until late at night and are tired when they wake up the next morning.
- Academically, many students start falling behind after the 6th grade. Several factors contribute to this: heavy curriculum, a lack of habit to studying at home, a lack of space and facilities for independent study, inadequate parental support, hormonal changes, the increasing negative influence of peers/TV/mobile phone, malnutrition, a lack of motivation and a long-term vision.
- In Gujarat, children aged 5 and older are automatically admitted to the first grade, regardless of their maturity level. The academic demands of their grade level are hard for such students to manage.
- It is difficult for students to write a few simple sentences on a given topic. It is difficult for them to write in the proper sequence despite understanding the subject. In math and science, these students often score high, but in language they are weak.
- The majority of students lag behind academically compared to their actual school grades. By the time they reach fourth grade, the lagging behind can range from 1-3 grades. Students attending government schools are more likely to experience this discrepancy. It is not uncommon for such students to drop out of school, especially after the eighth grade.
- In elementary school, there is insufficient language reading material for children of the appropriate age.
- Malnutrition is a major problem among slum children.
- There are usually two parents who work in a slum, usually, one father is a daily wage earner (artisan, laborer, driver) and the other is a domestic helper. They leave their children unsupervised, and girls are responsible for cleaning and cooking. As a result, slum children grow up with poor education and poor parental guidance. In families where both parents are working, children often receive pocket money that they use to buy junk food, resulting in a reduction in home-cooked meals and being underweight.
- Students' academic performance is negatively affected by verbal and physical violence at home. The most common cause is an alcoholic father. Added to the complexity of such a situation is the temporary departure of the frustrated mother from the family. It is common for children to be physically punished at home and in school.
- Few parents are cooperative and lack a basic understanding of what they need to do to provide basic care to their children, e.g. sending their children to school regularly, providing proper timely feeds, ensuring their homework is done, sleeping regularly, restricting TV time, etc.
- Families and friends teach their children addictive habits. The prevalence of chewing tobacco, smoking, and drinking alcohol in adult males is about 45% and in adult females, it is about 22%. A few illegal alcohol shops can be found in Mujmahuda.
Read also: problems faced by children in slums
Solution for Education Problems in Slum Areas:
While the education system in slums isn't great either, a country's progress is often measured by the rural education scene. In India, some education problems in slum areas can be solved by developing the following solutions.
- Prioritizing on-site, incremental upgrades. Instead of steamrolling informal settlements and rebuilding them wholesale, cities should invest in incremental improvements (whether those include infrastructures such as paved roads and piped water, or resources for families to upgrade their homes themselves) to avoid the worst effects of gentrification and urban expansion.
- Providing a voice for vulnerable groups. New policies for housing and urban services should be based on the needs of informal residents, squatters, migrants, people with disabilities, and women, among others.
- Collaboration with NGOs and academic institutions. An example of how symbiotic relationships among urban actors can facilitate innovation, fill knowledge gaps, and build up capacity for positive change is Surabaya's partnership with its Institute of Technology.
- By improving transport networks. To ensure that low-income communities have access to transportation, cities should improve their transportation networks. By designing streets that work for all users (not only cars), investing in integrated, user-centered public transportation, and managing demand for private vehicles, we can ensure vulnerable residents have equitable access to opportunities.
- Providing better access to services and avoiding displacement of residents. Low-income residents should be displaced to the periphery of a city, far from essential services, by high-end development. In order to transform cities into places that work for all residents, it is necessary to provide reliable and affordable access to energy, water, and sanitation infrastructure and to connect these communities with a broader network of jobs and services. Additionally, this contributes to a healthy urban economy by helping those who work from home to operate safely and productively.