Schools key to developing kids

2014-04-05

Himalayan News Service

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KATHMANDU: Education minister Ganga Lal Tuladhar today said Early Childhood Development (ECD) should be brought within school premises.

Currently, of the 28,000 ECDs across the country, some are being run by the community while in some places schools run them.

Speaking at a programme organised by Department of Education (DoE) and Seto Gurans National Child Development Service with the support of Save the Children International, Minister Tuladhar said, “Since the later development of children is connected with school education, ECD should be brought within school premises so that overall development is ensured in early childhood as well as later.”

He said he was preparing the overall management and budgetary provision of ECD management and its teaching staff.

Dilli Rimal, director, Department of Education said government investment in ECD was negligible.

He said, “We are only providing salary for ECD volunteers and registration of ECD,” adding, “We have not been able to provide teaching and other materials to support ECD.” He also spoke of the need for clarity in ECD policy.

Madhu Rajbhandari, director of Seto Gurans said that around 15 per cent of the total population comprises children below five years, fit for joining ECD. She also said girls’ enrolment in ECD is very low because investment in ECD was insignificant.

International studies show that investment of 1 $ in ECD will give a return of 17 $ in future, she added.

Meanwhile, Sita Poudel, coordinator of ECD caucus- a group of Constituent Assembly members to encode the issue of ECD in the constitution, said it should be managed by local bodies to make it effective in its delivery as locals understood the needs of the children well.

(Source: The Himalayantimes: Published on 4th July)