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Early Childhood Children Education


The Need

That Early Childhood Education is of crucial significance for the optimum development of the child is admitted On all hands in this country and abroad, Studies have proved conclusively that foundation for later development is laid in the early years and improverishment suffered at this stage damages severly the subsequent development of the child.

The importance of Early Childhood Education in the Indian context where 48% of the population live below the poverty line 63.83% are illiterate and one-fifth of the population is the age- group 0-6 years hardly needs any emphasis. Early Childhood Education has assumed added importance in the context of the programme of Universalisation of Elementary Education.

One of the main objectives of educational development according to sixth Five Year Plan 1980-85,is -"to ensure essential minimum education to all children up to the age of 14 years within the next 10 years.

This is by way of realising the Constitutional goal in the Directive Principle enshrined in Article 45 of the Constitution. The main tasks during the Sixth Plan for Elementary Education are two- fold.

(i) to achieve additional enrolment of 180 lakhs of children in classes I-VIII, and

(ii) to ensure drastic reduction in the drop-out rates.

To realise the above two minimum objectives, extensive and intensive programmes by way of removing the infrastructural deficiencies and adopting various measures for quality improvements of elementary education have been undertaken.

Objectives of Early Childhood Education

The Sixth Plan has for the first time during the planned development and of the country, accorded due emphasis on Early Childhood(Pre-school)Education, particularly for the first generation learning families as a distinct strategy for the programme of Universalisation of Elementary Education. Early childhood Education (ECE) hits assumed dual importance.

First, its direct influence on child development.

Second, its potential contribution to Universalisation of Elementary Education.

The latter has two functional aspects. One is that the Pre- School Child receives care in the ECE Centre and his Young caretaker, usually a girl, is free to) Join and attend school, thus removing one basic cause of drop-outs particularly in the first 2-3 years of the primary stage. The former enables the child to become familiar with the ideas of constructive play and develop desirable behavioural patterns, so badly needed in the case of children of poor and illiterate parents constituting the first generation learning families.

Objectives of the scheme

It envisages that under the Sixth Plan a significant start will be made for the development of early childhood education for the first generation learning families in back-ward areas. First programmes of training of ECE teachers and early childhood education centres as adjuncts of primary/middle schools will be started under the State Sector of Plan. Secondly, UNICEF has agreed to extent assistance for the development of ECE programmes in 11 states during the 1981-83 period of Master Plan of Operation. Significant inputs have been offered by UNICEF on workshop/seminars for developing & producing training materials, orienting administrative & supervisory personnel, providing short -term training of early childhood educators and supplying play materials and equipment of a selected number of ECE centres in each of the 11 States.

In the field of ECE in the country the role of the voluntary agencies has been dominant so far. In extending early childhood education as indicated earlier, it has therefore been considered necessary to Support the voluntary agencies in this task. Hence the present schemes under the Central Sector of the Sixth Plan. Financial assistance Would be provided to the voluntary agencies to run early childhood (pre-schools) education centres as adjuncts of primary/middle school run either by Government, local body or private management, particularly for the disadvantaged sections in rural/tribal/backward areas, in nine educationally backward States namely, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Jammu & Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Rajashthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. To avoid any duplication of efforts in an area the ECE centres run with central assistance under this schemes should be in blocks and villages that do not have similar centres run by ICDS/Social Welfare Sector or any other schemes of Government or non-Government body.


5.(a)Registered Voluntary societies, public trusts & non -profit -making companies would be eligible for assistance under this scheme. Ordinarily, agencies which are no legal entities would not be eligible. However, even agencies which are no legal entities may be considered for assistance provided the Collector/ Deputy Commissioner certifies the practical difficulties Owing to which they Could not be registered and the bonafides of such organisations.

(b) In order to be eligible for financial assistance under the scheme an agency should:-

(i)Have a proper constitution or articles of association;

(ii)Have a properly constituted managing body with its powers and duties clearly defined in the constitution;

(iii)Be in a position to secure the involvement of Voluntary basis, of knowledgeable person for furthering its programmes;

(iv) Not to run to the profit of any individual or body of individuals;

(v) Not discriminate against any person or group of persons on the ground of sex, religion, caste or creed,

(vi) Not directly function for the furthering of the interests of any political party;

(vii) Not in any manner incite communal disharmony;

(viii) Not proselytise; and

(ix) Echew violence.

Preference will given to such voluntary organisations as

(i) have experience of running early children education centres for children of age-group 0-3 and 3-6,

(ii) have the necessary personnel for administering and supervising the centres; and

(iii) have no objection to subject themselves to the guidance and overseeing by the Central/State Government Officers/agencies, including both academic and administrative components.

Nature of Assistance

Eligible organisations will be given grants for early child hood education centres both as adjuncts of primary and middle schools and independent units. Grants will cover the following items for running ECE centres.


  1. Salaries of staff consisting of minimum of one teacher and one helper.
  2. Art, craft etc.
  3. Contingencies.
  4. First aid and medicines
  5. Honorarium to doctors



The norms of assistance on the above items and the staffing norms will be as indicated in Annexure-I.

If an agency is already receiving or its expecting to receive grants from some other official source for a project for which applications is made under this scheme, the assistance under this scheme will normally be made after taking into considerat ion the grant received or likely to be received from such other official source. It will ordinarily be ensured that an agency already in receipt of a recurring grant from any other official source., central/or state does not transfer any part of that liability to a grant to be sanctioned under this scheme.

The Procedure

8. (a) Application : A voluntary agency eligible to receive assistance under this scheme can make an application shall be received through the State Government together their views about the agency eligibility, suitability of the activity to be undertaken, capacity of the agency to implement the proposed programme etc.

(b) Grant-in-aid Committee: the applications for grant-in-aid will ordinarily be examined by a grant-in-aid committee to be appointed by the Dept. of Women & Child Development. Wherever it is considered necessary representative of the agency making the application may be invited to discuss the proposal with the committee.

(c) Duration : Assistance may be sought for such duration as the applicant agency may consider appropriate. Ordinarily such assistance will not be approved for a period beyond the financial year 1985-86. Indication in regard to the period for which grant has been approved will normally be given in the letter of sanction. The grantee agency will have to run the centre at least for one year;

(d) Release of Grants : On approval of the project the grant shall be released to the agency on an annual basis in two instalments - the first one shall be released immediately after the issue of the sanction. After the agency concerned has utilised 75% of the instalment, it may make a request for release of the subsequent instalment. The agency will be expected to attach a progress report & a statement of expenditure and the subsequent instalment will then be released to it provided,

(i)that before the release of the third instalment the agency must furnish utilisation certificate in respect of the first instalment;

(ii) that before release of the second instalment in a particular financial year the Utilisation certificate and audited statement in respect of the grants released till the end of the preceding year shall be furnished; and

(iii) the agency shall ensure submission of timely returns in respect of its activities.

(e) Disbursement : grants payable to a voluntary agency will be remitted to it by demand draft/cheque drawn in its favour by Deptt. of Women and Child Development. The disbursement of the demand draft/cheque will be made by the Collector or the Chief Executive Officer, as may be recommended by the State Government of the district where the voluntary agency has its registered office/and quarters, provided.

(i) that the State Government may design any other officer for such disbursement;

(ii) that if a State Government so desires, the Ministry would make direct disbursement of the demand draft/cheque to the voluntary agencies of the State concerned; and

(iii) Disbursement to all India Voluntary agencies would be made directly by the Ministry

Conditions of Grant

9. (i) The grant receiving agency will be required to execute a bond on the prescribed form (Annexure V). The bond shall be supported by the sureties if the agency is not a legal entity.

(ii) An agency in receipt of financial assistance shall be open to inspection by an officer of the Dept. of Women and Child Development and the Dept. of Education and/or National Council of Education Research & Training of the State Education Department or any of its agency like State Institute of Education (SIE), State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT).

(iii) The accounts of the project shall be maintained properly and separately and submitted as and when required. They shall always be open to check by an officer deputed by the Government of India or the State Government. They shall also be open to a test check by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, at his discretion.

(iv) The audited accounts together with the utilisation certificate in the prescribed form duty countersigned by the Chartered Accountant are required to be furnish within six months in respect of a preceding year or after expiry of the duration for which grant is approved.

(v) The agency shall maintain a record of all assets acquired wholly or substantially out of Government grant and maintain a register of such assets in the prescribed proforma. Such assets shall not be disposed of, encumbered or utilised for purposes other than those for which the grant was given without prior sanction of the Government of India. Should the agency cease to exit at any time, such properties shall revert to the Government of India.

(vi) When the State Government/Government of India have reasons to believe that the sanctioned money is not being utilised for approved purposes the payment of grant may be stopped and the earlier grants recovered.

(vii) The institution must exercise reasonable economy in the working of the approved project.

(viii) The grantee agency shall furnish to the Ministry of Human Resource Development, (Department of Women and Child Development) reports as may be prescribed.

(ix) The decision of the Secretary to the Government of India in the Dept. of Women & Child Development on the question Whether there has been breach or violation or any of the terms and conditions mentioned in the sanction letter shall be final and binding on the grantee.

Annexure - I


The Central Early Childhood Education Centre is meant for the age group 3-4 years, to be attached to a primary/middle school having primary section or in its near vicinity; run either by Government/Local Body/private agency and working either by its administrative control or in close cooperation with. The expenditure will be in as follows


Staff one teacher for every 30 children, the second teacher to be the if the number exceeds 40.

One helper to every 50 children, the second helper to be added if the number exceeds 50.

Minimum staff 1 teacher and 1 helper

Teacher @ Rs. 175/- p.m, Upto

Helper @ Rs. 50/- p.m. 31.3.1985

Teacher (non-matriculate)@ Rs. 200/- p.m.

Teacher (Matriculate)@ Rs. 250/- p.m. From 1.4.85

Helper Rs. 90/- p.m.

Teacher (Non-matriculate) From 15.1.1993 @ Rs. 250/- p.m.

Teacher (Matriculates)@ Rs. 300/- p.m.

Helper Rs. 125/- p.m.

Provision for art, craft etc. Rs.1 per month per child for 12 months

Contingencies including Rs.50 per month per centre repair and replacement for 12 months

First aid and medicine Rs.2 per child per month per centre for 12 months

Honorarium to doctors Rs.100 per month per centre for 4 visits for 12 months

Supervisory expenses Rs. 150/- p.m. for 12 months to the organisation running 10 to 30 centres.

Non-Recurring Equipment

(Play equipment, furniture, kitchen equipment, etc. Rs. 300/- per centre)

The above would work out to Rs. 10980/10380/- per year per centre of 30 children. (Additional amount Rs. 1,800/- per year will be given as supervision costs to the Organisation running 10 to 30 centres). Land and building will have to be provided by the State Government/Local Body/voluntary agency.

Note : (i) The teacher should at least have passed middle standard. Voluntary organisations appointing the teacher should ensure that the candidate has some institutional training in handling children.

(ii) Costs of feeding for supplementary nutrition are provided for all such programmes Under the state sector by the States. It is expected that food materials or food costs according to approved norms shall be provided by the states for these ECE Centres.

Annexure - II


(to be submitted in duplicate)


Part I

(To be rifled by the applicant)

1. Name of the Agency


2. Brief history of the agency, its objects and activities



3 Whether registered Under Indian Societies Registration Act, 1980 (Act XXI of 1860), Public trust or non-profit-making company? Give number and attach copy of the relavent document.



4. Whether the organisation has any experience in early childhood education for children. If so, a brief mention may be made indicating the years, size and type and location of programmes organised.



5 Whether the office of the organisation is located in its own or rented building?



6. (a) The number of early childhood education centres for which the grant is applied for the area to be covered.



(b) Area to be covered Rural/Urban

(c) Name of the village, block or district in which ECE centres will be set up.



7. Duration of the project


8. Whether any part of the expenditure on the project is being or is likely to be provided by some other official, non-official or foreign source? If so, indicate the extent and the name of the agency.



9. Total estimated expenditure on the project:

(i) Non-recurring Rs .............

(ii) Recurring Rs .............

10. Amount of grant requested

(i) Non-recurring Rs .............

(ii) Recurring Rs .............

11. Whether the institution is in a position to meet its share of the expenditure? If so, indicate the probable Source.



12. Whether the institution has adequate personnel to look after the administrative arrangements for running ECE centres, if so, indicate their details.

13. List of papers/statements to be attached.

(a) Constitution of the Agency.

(b) Constitution of the Board of Management with particulars of each member.

(c) Latest available annual report.

(d) Audited accounts for the last three years along with a copy of the certified balance sheet for the previous year.

(e) Details of the project which should include a statement giving item-wise and yearwise details of estimated, recurring and non-recurring expenditure on the project.

14. List of additional papers, if any.

15. Additional information, if any.

Signature of the authorised person

Designation and stamp



(a) The application has been examined and it is certified that the organisation is eligible for assistance and has the capability of taking tip a programme of.................... ECE centre (............................)

(b) It is also certified that the centres will be Set up In the areas other than ICDS blocks.



Office Stamp.......

The officer signing this should not be below the rank of Under Secretary.


1. The number of early childhood education centres to be set up, with central assistance year wise.

2. Name of the block/urban mohalla preferable with a map attached in which the project is to be taken up (if the project will cover a part of the block, please give names of villages).

3. In the area selected for the project, does any other agency, Governmental of non governmental run pre-school education centres of any type? If so, details thereof may be given.

4. (i) Number of children to be covered.

(ii) Estimated number of children in the age group 3-6 in the catchment area.

5. Content of the ECE education programme, etc. Briefly describe the objectives and strategy of the project to be taken LIP.

6. Procedure for selection of teachers.

7. Teaching materials to be used (please give a list of the Such items).

8. Arrangements regarding training of teachers.

9. Arrangements for coordination and cooperation with various development agencies.

Financial estimates.

Proforma for Submission of Quarterly Progress Report on ECE Centres for 3-6 years Age Group Children


(1.1) Name of the Voluntary Agency -------------------

(1.2) Year of Establishment -------------------

(1.3) Name of State -------------------

(1.4) Name of the District -------------------

(1.5) Name of the organiser Responsible for Administering the Centres -------------------

(1.6) Complete Postal Address of the

Voluntary Agency -------------------

(1.7) Quarter Under Report

1st April - June

2nd July - September

3rd October - December

4th January - March


(2.1) No. of Centres sanctioned -------------------

(2.2) No. of Centres Functioning

(Detailed list with full

Addresses of ECE Centres) -------------------

(2.3) No. of Centres closed down -------------------

(2.4) No. of Centres re-opened -------------------

(2.5) Give area wise distribution of the Centres

No. of Centres

(i) Urban

(ii) Rural

(iii) Tribal Total

(2.6) Date from which centre (s) are functioning.

Date Months Years

(2.7) Time of functioning of the centres

(2.8) Furnish details on the following:

S.No. Category Girls Boys Total
1. SC      
2. ST      
3. Other      

(2.9) Percentage of average attendance in the centres:

Below 40 1
40 - 60 2
61 - 80 3
Above 80 4


(3.1) No. of posts sanctioned -------------------

(3.2) No. of teachers in position -------------------

(3.3) No. of teachers trained -------------------

(3.4) Educational Qualification -------------------

(3.5) Type of training Course attended

by the teachers (against appropriate category)

Certificate Course -------------------

Job Training Course -------------------

Orientation Course -------------------

Refresher Course -------------------

Total -------------------


(4.1) Number of Supervisor, appointed

Please mention the number _________________________________

(4.2) How many centres are attached to one Supervisor.


(4.3) What is the mode of supervision i.e. how many times in a month is a centre visited by State Government Officers.




(4.4) Do the supervisors organise regular meetings for the teachers.

Yes/No --------------------------------------------------

(i) If yes, how many meetings have been conducted during the reporting time.


(5.1) Mention the mechanisms adopted for monitoring the centres.

(5.2) Who does the Evaluation of centres of your organisation please furnish the details


(6.1) How many children have been enroled in primary schools who attended ECE Centres (Furnish exact number).


Name of Programme Organiser ------------------------------


Signature ---------------------------------------------

Date ---------------------------------------------

Full Address ---------------------------------------------



S.No. Places where ECE Centre Name of teacher Qualification is located mentioning Helper working of teacher

S.No. Village Block District Name of T/H Qualifi. Of T/H
1 2 3 4 5 6

Number of children at the ECE Centre Date from which Remarks

SC ST Others Total Boys Girls Total ECE Centre Functi-oning
7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15