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02 Mar 2006
AP Tribal Welfare Department partners with HiWEL

Nagarjunasagar Learning Station.
The 2001 population census placed Andhra Pradesh’s population at 75.7 million with the literacy rate of 60.5%. Out of the total population, almost 5 million is tribal with a literacy rate as low as 17%. These tribes are economically backward, engaged primarily in cultivation, forest product gathering and casual labour. The state government of Andhra Pradesh has initiated many programs to improve literacy and alleviate the economic hardships of the tribal population. One such effort is establishing Gurukulams - residential schools that provide free education; boarding and lodging facilities for economically disadvantaged children. The Education Department, Social Welfare Department and Tribal Welfare Department of the state government manage these Gurukulams.

Children at the Parvatipuram Learning Station.
Hole-in-the-Wall Education Ltd. is partnering with the Tribal Welfare Department of Andhra Pradesh to set up four learning stations in four districts of the state. The towns in which the Learning Stations are being set up are Parvathipuram, Srisailam, Bhadrachalam and Nagarjunasagar. Out of these four locations, Parvathipuram, Srisailam and Bhadrachalam have Schools of Excellence. Established in August 2005, these Schools of Excellence provide schooling to the brightest among the tribal children. The medium of instruction is English in these schools, which are also co-educational from classes 8th to 10th.

The school in Nagarjunasagar is Andhra Pradesh Tribal Welfare Residential School (Primitive Tribe Group - boys). Established in 1986, the school has a total strength of 458 students and 23 teachers. The school has classes from 3rd till 10th standard. The medium of instruction is Telugu, though English is also taught. This school has a computer lab with fifteen computers. The school is for children belonging to Primitive Tribe Groups, majority of whom are first generation learners.

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Bhadrachalam Learning Station

Children queue up at the Bhadrachalam Learning Station

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