Dropout rate at upper primary level higher in boys in West Bengal: Unicef

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Kolkata : The dropout rate of boys at upper primary level is double that of girls in West Bengal, and the challenge is to find out the disparities, said country representative of Unicef Yasmin Ali Haque on Tuesday.

According to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS), the dropout rate at upper primary level is 2.9 per cent for girls and 5.8 per cent for boys in the schools of West Bengal.

"In West Bengal drop-outs rates in boys are higher than in girls. We have to see where they are going, they are probably looking for work to support their families. We have to see where the disparities are," said Haque.

According to her, some places in West Bengal are doing well. "There is a hope that the next, NFHS data will show positive results."

Haque said due to the coordinated work of the hospital administration and the block development officers, there has been no delivery of children at home since November, 2017. Most of the deliveries are taking place in a rural hospital.

Talking about how child-deliveries in a hospital can be very effective to curb malnutrition, she said, "Only 10 per cent of children in India get adequate quality and quantity of food during their weaning period, that is the major step that needs to be improved. A hospital can play a major role here."

"The next survey will bring positive results as we are working in coordination with the government to spread the importance of nutrition. The anganwadis and some NGOs are working a lot for it," said Mohammad Mohiuddin, chief of West Bengal unit of Unicef.

When asked about the state government's initiative for girls education, 'Kanyashree', Haque said, "I think the Kanyashree has helped as more number of girls are staying in school and they are showing courage to say that are not going to get married. There is a difference."