dirt floors and stone walls project: saving india’s public schools

Please watch the video below to get a glimpse into India’s public school system. It is hurting the futures of the bright children who are so eager to learn.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION TO MY PROJECT! Every dollar makes a difference.

A teacher oversees students as they file out of class.


The government of India provides free schooling for children until they are in 7th grade. The problem is that 40% of Indian children drop out of school before they reach the age of 10. Some of these public schools only receive funding once every 3 years and are ordered to keep their gates closed and locked while classes are in session. After 7th “standard” they must continue their education outside of the government system. Those wealthy enough enroll in a private school, while those lucky enough are accepted into a NGO or charter school. However, less than 8% of Indian families can afford to send their children to private school and, with so few options, getting into a NGO or charter school is nearly impossible.

A teacher hangs her head as she reviews a pre-determined lesson plan.

It isn’t easy to set up these non-governmental schools. The government not only sets restrictions on the schools that are in its system, but also the ones that are trying to liberate themselves from said system. All NGO schools and individuals funding charter schools must sign a contract stating that they will never ask for assistance from the government, despite having to follow its rules.

The children are eager and the teachers are dedicated, but the government is indifferent to the point of negligence.


My goal is to return to India and finish my story about the public school system. Through my images, I hope to highlight the unfair discrepancy of quality and resources between the public and private schools. By shining the spotlight on this problem I hope to spur the international community to take action and help me do something about it.

The more funding I get means the longer I’ll stay and the more I can help these children.

A teacher's humble desk.


The money donated to this project will go toward school supplies for the kids (pens, pencils, erasers, notebooks, rulers, chalk, etc.), equipment, travel, rentals, guides, translators, food and your AMAZING REWARDS, of course!

Also, upon my return to NYC, I will use the remaining funds to put together a gallery show and fundraiser. All of the proceeds from this fundraiser will go to Indian families who need help giving their children the education they deserve but cannot afford.

Twins pose at the front of their classroom.
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION TO MY PROJECT! Every dollar makes a difference.

Thank you so much for your support.


~ by jacobbmurphy on December 9, 2010.

3 Responses to “dirt floors and stone walls project: saving india’s public schools”

  1. Hi! I just came across your blog coincidencially and had to write to you because your pics really brought tears to my eyes. A week ago I came back home to Norway after 9 weeks in India, where I worked as a volunteer teacher in two different schools in two small villages in Lalsot, Dausa district, not far from Jaipur. (I had a blog, but in Norwegian, so I guess it doesn’t make much sense to you: http://www.indiareise.blogspot.com/) However: It was really an experience for life, and your pictures bring all the memories from my stay so close back to me with their extraordinary beauty. I wish you very good luck with your project!

  2. excellent pictures and depiction. Great work.

  3. This is just beautiful, thank you for doing this project. These photos are simply awe inspiring.

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