Social exclusion has become one of the important themes in contemporary social policy debates in most of the developing countries, especially India. If social exclusion is a violation of rights, it immediately implies that a society that tolerates social exclusion is intrinsically deficient if it fails to grant basic rights or capabilities to its citizens.
Education is the basic fundamental Right of an Indian. The Nobel Laurate, Amartya Sen has identified three distinct ways to link the importance of education to the expansion of valuable capabilities. First, education fulfills an instrumental social role. For example, literacy fosters public debate and dialogue about social and political arrangements. Education also has an instrumental process role in facilitating our capacity to participate in decision making process in the household, community or national level. Finally education has an empowering and distributive role in facilitating the ability of disadvantaged, marginalized and excluded groups to organize politically, since without education these groups would be unable to gain access to centers of power and affect sense of redistribution. Overall, education has an interpersonal impact because people are able to use the benefits of education to help others as well as themselves and can therefore contribute to democratic freedoms and to the overall good of society as a whole. International Declarations like, the Millennium Development Goals, Education for All, the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development have made attempts to look at education beyond the simple human capital concerns.
India, with a population of over a billion is still overburdened with the most number of illiterates in the world. The most underprivileged and educationally deprived are the 69 per cent of the rural lot and the rest in urban slums. At this juncture our students from classes IV to XI have been assigned a social responsibility of taking up one illiterate person in his/her neighbourhood and to teach themin their summer holidays- “EACH ONE TEACH ONE”. The students were provided with a handbook from Hindustan Times for assistance from the school. They were instructed to make practice sheets and worksheets for basic writing skills in English, Hindi and Maths.
After the holidays the students shared memorable and sweet experiences of the Special Literacy Drive Project. Many of them taught their domestic help persons as well as their children who were not privileged enough to be in a formal school. Some of them had memorable teaching experience with the illiterate domestic helpers in their neighbourhood. In order to avoid the boredom of formal learning the students prepared colourful worksheets and narrated adventurous stories to gain their attention in improving oral skills.
Ishita Sharma, Chaitanya, Ishika, Paras, Aryan, Nitin, Advitiya of class VI, Sruti and Nikita of class VII, Sruti, Keerti Gupta, Nimisha, Anirudh, Keerti, Bharat, Nisha, Anjana, Shubham, Deepak of class VIII, Kanica of class X and Bharti of class XI presented appreciable work on the project.