Status of Implementation of the Right to Education Act: The First Year Some Preliminary Findings
About the Report Right to Education is one year old- citizens want to know the status Look at what has worked and what has not. If something was done, and done well in some state, appreciate it. Draw recommendations for others If something not done: Hold government to account, see potential role of civil society Report is a draft- inputs required. Would be finalized only after consultation Prepared by networks and agencies themselves based on our collective knowledge. Sources: Government Reports, Network reports, media coverage of issues. Drafting team process Highlighted, lack of transparent systematic sources of info. in public domain
Preparation Status Revision of SSA Framework in line RTE State Rules: Only 5 States- AP, Arunachal, Orissa, Sikkim, Manipur. 2 got Cabinet approval Proposed amendments for persons with disability not yet passed School Management Committees- First line of grievance redressal- not formed in majority states SCPCR: 11 States, REPA: 3 more. NCPCR/SCPCR/ MHRD: Human Resources Delayed Start to implementation over question of resources Additional Resources for RTE: 8,522 Crores in last financial year. MHRD Asked for 34,000 Crores for SSA in 2011-12, received 21,000. In contrast, government estimates 7,907 crore spent on Commonwealth Games last year. Persistent under spending- late release of money, need for additional account staff, occasional mismatch between community need and supply 18% schools (2009-10) did not receive TLM grant Children under six under the Act: Clause not fully implemented Talk of extension of RTE to secondary education
COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION RTE Provides considerable space for nation’s citizens coming out in support of their schools and strengthening national public education system However, awareness of Key Provisions limited: 6m into the Act, 1 in 6 people knew the Act existed. Under 3% aware of NCPCR/SCPCR. SMCs not in place in large number of States: Despite deadline of 6m across country Consequently, School Development Plans not prepared in states. Bottom up process of planning, strategizing to lay direction of each school not happened. Deadline was 9 months SMCs for aided schools? Unaided school lacked them from the start Local Authorities: Largely ignored in discourse, preparation. Local Authorities control majority of elementary schools in 4 States. Previous legislations like PESA, PRI Acts, 73d and 74th Constitutional Amendments hold great potential for supporting RTE Act provisions
Teachers RTE Act seeks to redress consistent problem of teacher shortages- MHRD Estimate 12 lakhadditional trained teachers needed for Act’s implementation. UP: Situation particularly grave. Recruitment started in a few states. First time, consistent norms for teacher qualification. National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education. Teacher Eligibility Tests. ? Translated on ground 2009-10, 1 in 5 teachers not compliant with old norms. Hiring parateachers not stopped. JRM of SSA: Number of untrained teachers more than training capacity Minimum Working Days for Teachers: Over 50% Upper Primary Schools (2009-10) did not reach new target levels Non Teaching Work: Curtailed, but would require secretarial support 40% Schools lack head teachers: Lack of specific training of HMs- National Program being considered Onsite support systems weak
INCLUSION Dropout- Gov. 8.1 million. In practice higher. Migrants, child labourers. Street Children, Children living with and affected by HIV AIDS, trafficked children Closure of small schools due to “rationalization” risk for those in “remote” areas Long Standing Issues of Exclusion of some social groups. Dalits, Adivasis, Muslims , Girls disproportionately likely to drop out. Sacchar Committee Recommendations. RTE Reiterates instruction in mother Tongue- but no significant change on the ground. School Fees: ArjunSengupta 70% of India on Rs 20 a day Children with Disability: PWD Act being amended. Figures Gross under-estimate, 1.5 population disabled in India, but 9% in US? Single resource teacher for 242 identified disabled children, 10 States/UTs lack even a single teacher receiving trained on disability Child Labour: Still not illegal. Children in Agriculture outside purview. NCLP ? Areas of Civil Unrest: Schools targeted by Naxalite groups. Army occupation not ended Private Schools- Compulsory Recognition. Need to adhere to new norms. Issues of inclusiveness and equity. 25% Quota. PPP: An emerging risk? Larger question of multiple strands equity: KVs vs Mainstream Gov Schools, Elite Private vs Government Schools
QUALITY Shortage of Upper Primary Schools At time when RTE Came into force: 1 in 10 schools lacked drinking water, 45% lacked a toilet, Half lacked a ramp Yes, considerable effort , especially in some states, to enhance infrastructure 40% Schools (ASER 2009) Not RTE Ready 27 States banned corporal punishment in schools. But it continues. Need to remedy teaching environment, promote positive discipline 20 States prohibited detention expulsion. Often being interpreted as no learning 26 States, no board examination. 22 States planned to move to CCE- however, lack of robust teacher training systems? 14 States reviewed curriculum to align with NCF Teaching Methodologies: 30% classrooms have some form of group work. “Chalk and Talk” Learning Outcomes??
How does it all come together? Policy Changes happening, albeit slowly BUT, all or almost all ground level deadlines either missed or at risk of being missed Mechanisms of ambitious vision being translated into reality not completely clear Implementation has been slow, Lot of initial time lost However, situation is not beyond remedy! Issues need to be pushed more given the time bound deadlines and the legally justiciable nature of provisions Civil Society support for a concerted push to ensure implementation of RTE minimum norms in direction of equitable, quality education of all the young citizens of the country and setting up of a comprehensive system of public education system along the lines of a common school system