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Pratham works in collaboration with locally based Akshara Foundation, building off of existing relationships and knowledge for the maximum impact. We have established a partnership with the Karnataka’s Sarva Shikha Abhiyan (SSA), the education department which determines curriculum and instructional approach for the state.
Pratham is doing great work to develop self-sustaining programs while protecting the natural environment, with a unique program to encourage corporate paper recycling, in which the profits generated from the recycled paper are used to support Pratham classes and projects.
Here we teach the basics and maintain a strict focus on results. While 96.5% of 6-14 year-olds go to school, the children here really need help. Aser has shown us:
• 50% of fifth grade students cannot read a 2nd grade text.
• 50% of fourth grade students cannot read a 2nd grade text.
In partnership with Akshara, we benefit from their local knowledge and we share best practices that benefit them in their work. Working together we provide a robust Read India campaign and an assortment of other programs:
Recently, we’ve begun actively working in Mysore via the Read India program. Reaching over 5000 children so far, volunteers have been trained in Pratham’s activity-based learning methodology, using which they give after-school support classes to weak students in grades 1-5. Children are assessed at the outset of the program, so that volunteers and block-level staff can track their progress. Pratham’s efforts extend beyond the classroom, reaching parents, volunteers, and local officials through meetings and melas to encourage a community focus on outcomes.
Early Childhood Education Certification
Pratham also works in affiliation with Karnataka State Open University, helping prepare balwadi teachers with theoretical knowledge on child development while providing opportunities for practical experience and hands-on learning.
Pratham has been working in urban Mysore since 2002, focusing initially on providing pre-school education to children in the most vulnerable neighborhoods of the city. Since that time, Pratham Mysore’s balwadi (pre-school) programs have expanded to225 centers in 14 Mysore slums. These balwadis provide 3-5 year olds with critical early literacy instruction, as well as creative activities related to cognition and physical development, and activities focused on good health and hygiene.
In this unique initiative, Pratham is connecting professionals in the city to rural learning centers for special programs on topics of the community’s choosing. Educated professionals head to villages around Mysore to give informal classes on everything from astronomy to Karnataka history, sharing their knowledge with community members and children while providing these children with a special chance to have their questions answered on exciting ideas outside the usual curriculum.