Odisha’s school student helpline service, Sampark, has helped in timely and efficient redressal of complaints lodged by students related to education and schools under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 (RTE). Besides addressing issues like corporal punishment, the helpline has helped improve discipline in the education system by reducing teacher absenteeism and increasing sensitisation towards children’s issues and their rights. In doing so, it has increased mobilisation among field officers, established an effective feedback mechanism while simultaneously opening a channel of communication between the students and education authorities, thereby helping provide solutions to students in distress. The
helpline centre receives 200-300 calls daily where people clarify their doubts as well as register complaints. The helpline not only registers complaints but also provides counselling to distressed callers.
This case study is a part of the Good Practices Resource Book 2015 and can be found on page 19.