Odisha Government Initiates Distribution of Dry Rations and Learning Materials to Non-Attending Students

The department has additionally urged the referral of these children to nearby health and wellness centers for health assessments and counseling services.

"Odisha Government's Student Support Program"
“Odisha Government’s Student Support Program”

The School and Mass Education Department in Bhubaneswar has initiated the distribution of dry food supplies and educational materials to students who are unable to attend school due to disabilities or illness.

The Chief Secretary chaired a meeting on June 8 to enforce the Orissa High Court’s directive to supply dry rations and educational materials to all children unable to attend school.

A program was introduced to identify children aged 6 to 14 to ensure they receive dry rations and educational materials. In the state, there are 3,694 students not attending school due to disability or health reasons, with 20 of them not enrolled, according to official sources.

The department has instructed all District Education Officers (DEOs) to ensure no school-age child is excluded from government programs. They have also requested the enrollment of these 20 children in age-appropriate classes.

DEOs have been directed to provide dry rations (rice) and preparation costs through direct benefit transfer (DBT) under PM POSHAN (midday meal) as per established norms. The department order mandates providing age-appropriate nationalized textbooks to these non-attending students.

Additionally, the department has urged referring these children to nearby health and wellness centers for health screenings and counseling.

In a letter to DEOs, Department Secretary Aswathy S. stated, “School instructors should monitor the academic progress of identified students, counsel their parents, and conduct monthly home visits. The provision of dry rations and cooking costs for these children should be included in the monthly management information system (MIS) data.”