Karthyayani Amma made it clear that age is just a number by topping the Kerala State Literacy Exam ‘Aksharalaksham’ previously this year. Whereas her herculean feat has been lauded by many all over the country, the state’s very own minister of education showed how appreciative he is of the lady’s achievement, by presenting her with a laptop.
After topping the exam with a whopping 98% marks, Amma had expressed that she would like to study computers and also appear in class 10 equivalency exam. So today when he was in the area for an event and realised that the famed topper was in vicinity, he went and bought a Dell Laptop and visited her home.
Amma greeted him and was asked whether she would like to use a computer. To this, she humbly said yes with a smile and was surprised to get the laptop. But then it was her turn to surprise the minister and his aides by typing her name in English.
Having never gone to school, Karthyayani Amma worked as a sweeper and domestic help to help raise her family. The literacy program having launched in Kerala, she enrolled in it and took the help of a teacher to prepare for it. She came out with flying colours, getting full marks in Mathematics, Reading, and 38 out of 40 in Writing.
Amma’s story is inspirational. At the age of 96 she has completed her dream of becoming literate and is pursuing other dreams. She wishes to keep studying as long as her health permits it. Hats off to the lady, and may she motivate generations to come to understand that age is no bar for learning.
It is also worth mentioning that the Kerala Government has taken beautiful steps to promote learning in the state. The Aksharalaksham Literacy Examination was taken this time by 40,440 people. Through this program, Kerala aspires to achieve 100% literacy. Already the state has the highest literacy rate in India and hitting the cent per cent milestone is a pioneering goal.
The Kerala State Literacy Mission Authority was founded in 1998 with the sole purpore of promoting literacy and continuing education.
Besides the literacy mission, the literacy mission also has Class 12 Equivalency, Class 10 Equivalency, 8 Standard Equivalency Course, and 4 Standard Equivalency.
The idea behind each is similar – any person who wishes to gain education equivalent to said class can enrolling in the course and study the same. Course study material are distributed to students through KSLMA district offices.
For the class 10 equivalency program, which Amma too wishes to pursue, requires one to be 17 years old. Those who complete this course will be eligible for higher studies and also preliminary appointed of PSC, and promotions. Contact classes are held select schools on Sundays and Public Holidays.
To enrol in class 12 equivalency program, student should be at least 22 years old. It is a 2 years course available in all subjects of Humanities and Commerce. Its registration and admission fee is Rs 300, and course fee is Rs 1950.
Class 4 equivalency program is taught for Malayalam, Maths, Nammalum Namukku Chuttum, English. Class 8 equivalency program is of 8 months and has no age limit in the strict sense, however those in age group 15 to 45 are given a priority.
Kerala, through these programs, is working its way steadily towards a more literate, more educated, and more confident state.