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Behind the stats: Ground reporting on the RTE
Atul Dev  30th Nov 2013

During a photography workshop run by VV and Magnum Foundation | Photo: Community Correspondent Anita Bharti

In a recent campaign launched by Video Volunteers, an international community media organisation, thousands of students from across India will reveal on camera what it is like for them to get access to education. These voices are the faces behind the statistic that there are 8 million children out of school in India.

Video Volunteers has launched a campaign with visual evidence of achievements and shortcomings of the RTE Act. In the first phase of the project, we will aim to cover 100 districts across all states.

2013 marks the deadline set to meet all the norms set forth in the Right to Education Act that envisioned equitable, quality education to every child in India. A collection of over eighty videos which form the base of the campaign "Pass Ya Fail", an audit of achievements and shortcomings of the RTE Act, is online.

Video Volunteers' 206 trained community correspondents, record the interviews. Trained community journalists will capture the reality of the implementation of the Act. Are schools easy to get to? Is the student-teacher ratio correct? Are there toilets and drinking water in the schools? Are the School Monitoring Committees functioning properly? This campaign looks to probe.

Community Media is important for rural areas and the new campaign by Video Volunteers is an active effort to report, the issues that don't make it to mainstream media, from the ground.

—Atul Dev

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