Abstract

Primary education is not only the bedrock for other levels of education and social wellbeing of individuals but also serves as a key determinant for societal and national economic growth. The main purpose of this study was to explore the causes of dropout by documenting the voices of primary school dropouts in order to assess and prevent this phenomenon. This study was qualitative in its nature because there was no such available exploration from the dropouts. Data were collected from 104 children who dropped out from primary schools by using interview schedule. These dropouts were identified by using snowball technique. Their responses were documented and thematic approach was applied for analysis. These data helped in understanding the circumstances that led them to the dropout point. The majority of the dropouts reported that school based problems such as, unfriendly environment of primary school, un-attended difficulty in learning, lack of interest in studies, lack of interest in school, corporal punishment, class repetition and lack of co-curricular activities as causes of their dropping out. The other causes were family based such as child labor and family crises. Some dropouts reported personal causes such as poor health and mental dullness. In the light of dropouts’ voices the study tries to justify inclusive education system, as the most appropriate solution for prevention of dropout of at risk students in primary schools in Pakistan.