Students exposed to adolescence programme more aware

A total of 21,967 students from various government and private schools in five states participated in the concurrent evaluation programme.

Updated: Nov 25, 2011, 12:23 PM IST

New Delhi: Students exposed to Adolescence
Education Programme in the country have higher levels of
awareness and knowledge on a variety of issues like physical
changes and HIV/AIDS compared to others, according to a new
study conducted by the UN.

The study -- Concurrent Evaluation of Adolescence
Education -- conducted by United Nations Population Fund
(UNFPA) also suggested that the AEP has contributed in
developing life skills of the students exposed to it.

A total of 21,967 students from various government and
private schools in five states of Punjab, Orissa, Maharashtra,
Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh participated in the concurrent
evaluation programme, while 1,000 teachers and 200 school
principals also took part.

Around 2,300 students, who were not exposed to the
programme, also participated in the concurrent evaluation.
"A higher proportion of AEP students, as compared to
non-AEP, had knowledge about physical changes that take place
during adolescence, especially with regard to menstruation and
others," the study, which was released on Friday, said.

A considerable knowledge gap exists between students` and
teachers` knowledge, the study said.

The programme, the study says, has also contributed
towards improving students` attitudes on several fronts,
including taboos associated with physical changes and issues
related to sexual harassment and discrimination towards
HIV-positive persons and their children.

"The findings endorse that AEP has contributed towards
enhancing knowledge of both students and teachers in a number
of areas addressed in the programme, for example, physical
changes during adolescence, nutrition and anaemia, HIV/AIDS and
substance abuse," it said.