‘The teacher struck my daughter’s name off the rolls’
PREMLATA | 30 | PARENT
NEW SANJAY CAMP, NEW DELHI
I HAVE been living in New Sanjay Camp, near Okhla Phase 2 in New Delhi, for the past 15 years; with my husband, four daughters and two sons. My husband is a ragpicker. He collects and sorts plastic bags. I sort rags. He makes about 6,000 a month. I make about 3,000. Four of our kids are of school-going age. We admitted them to a local municipal school.
My elder daughter, Neha, 14, was about to finish Class IV (she was 11 then), when she fell ill for eight days. Her teacher sent someone to enquire after her; someone in the neighbourhood misinformed that person, telling him that my daughter has gone back to our village in Uttar Pradesh and won’t be coming back. Without verifying this with any of us, the teacher had my child’s name struck off the rolls. When my daughter returned back to school, she was told she can no longer sit in the class. When I asked them why, they said her name has been taken off the rolls and that she has to be re-registered. For this, the school asked for all kinds of papers — they asked for an affidavit and a birth certificate. Earlier, they had admitted her without these documents.
That was more than three years ago. I ran around for a month but did not succeed in getting the required documents. I haven’t run around after that. I think her heart lies elsewhere, not in studies. Anyway, the schools are of no real use. My other daughter is studying in the same school in Class V and she can barely count up to 30.
School is important, I don’t doubt that. Education is something that stays with you forever. I had to drop out after
my mother died and look after the household. I want my daughters to get educated and do well in life.