In October 2011, 4500 poor students in 10 urban slum schools in India faced a crisis. Their main sponsor could no longer support the schools beyond March 2012. The students in these good quality English medium schools which charged only a nominal fee faced a bleak future – either shift to Government Schools, or unaffordable private schools, or drop out of school altogether. Given a monthly average family income of Rs. 5000/- ($90) mass drop out seemed inevitable.
In November 2011, Kasturi Trust, headed by Dr. G K Jayaram, stepped in and decided to ensure that none of the students lose out on their education. Over the next 12 months, helped in this effort by numerous generous organisations and philanthropists, permanent sponsors were found for 5 of the schools, who took over the schools and have ensured that the children continue their studies in a similar way.
The remaining 5 schools with about 1300 students were taken over directly by Kasturi Trust and named ‘Ekalavya Schools’. The schools continue to provide good quality English medium education from Class I to X and charge very low fees. Kasturi Trust is committed to leaving no child without schooling and is striving to find permanent funding for the 5 schools.