Sajeevta Foundation

Sajeevta Foundation

Enabling social inclusion in classrooms with children from diverse backgrounds

The Opportunity

India’s widening income inequality is compounded by an inequitable education system in which the wealthy can afford high-fee private schools and the poorest enrol in government schools that often deliver poor quality education.  Because of increasing legal and societal mandates to create more inclusive classrooms, children from low-income backgrounds have opportunities to join private schools.

The Model

Sajeevta Foundation has developed innovations in inclusive learning to ensure that diverse classrooms result in a better education for all children. With a deep appreciation that learning is a social process in which children participate not only in schools, but also at home and in the community, Sajeevta Foundation is currently working in two high-income private schools in Gandhinagar (Gujarat) to create socially inclusive learning environments. As part of this engagement, teachers and headmasters are trained to address the needs of children with varying learning levels and diverse backgrounds, all in a single classroom. Additionally, to improve learning levels, Sajeevta has started after-school learning centres in the communities of low-income children. Through community interventions, Sajeevta is also encouraging parents to recognise the importance of children’s learning and education.

Potential for Systemic Impact

Section 12(1)(c) of the The Right to Education (RTE) Act mandates 25% reservation for children from disadvantaged groups in private unaided non-minority schools. This provision mandates the largest public-funded inclusive learning initiative in private schools, integrating children from economically weaker sections with their wealthier peers.  Yet little is known of how to best create integrated classrooms.

Through its work, Sajeevta Foundation aims to develop a comprehensive set of support systems and services that schools can employ to ensure effective implementation of social inclusion in the classroom for children from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.