Enhancing the quality of primary
education in india
• 58% of children do not complete primary education in
• According to the Annual Status of Education Report
(ASER) 2012, 10 crores children in India are two or
more years below their grade level.
• As of 2012, only 30% of standard three students could
read a standard 1 text a drop from 50% in 2009
• The ASER report also estimates that only 50% of rural
children enrolled in standard five can fluently read a
standard two text book.
• 40% of standard five students in rural India cannot
solve simple two-digit subtractions.
29.3% of India’s population falls in the age group of 0-14
years . Primary education lays the foundation towards building a
pool of capable and empowered citizens. Investment in
education will enable the citizens to participate in the growth
process through improved productivity, employment, and
wages. This would drive sustained economic growth for
decades. Hence, primary education should be a critical
component of the inclusive growth agenda of the Indian
The past decade has seen substantial increase in education
investments under the Sarva Shisha Abhiyan (SSA), the Right to
Education Act 2010 as well as the Mid Day Meals Scheme. The
Right to Education (RTE) Act makes education a fundamental
right. The Mid Day Meals Scheme provides free cooked lunch to
children from both primary and upper primary classes studying
in government schools to tackle the dual issue of food security as
well as give them an incentive to go to school.
According to a Parliamentary report, there is a paucity of teachers and
trained staff. The report also finds that several states, including Delhi,
Haryana, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra saw a reduction in number of
teachers between 2009-10 and 2010-11
There exists poor governance and oversight to monitor performance of
Teacher absence rates were over 25% across India in 2003, a survey that
covered the same areas in 2010 found that teachers’ absence in rural India
was still around 24
Socio-cultural factors like discrimination against the girl child, prevalence
of child labour and cast differences play a major role in hindering the
access to quality primary education.
Government schools have poor infrastructural facilities. A survey suggests
that 95.2% of schools do not meet the RTE infrastructure indicators
The way ahead
• One needs to critically examine the
perspective from all the three sides that is
children, parents and teachers
• Schools should be equipped with innovative
methods of teaching
• The curriculum frame work should be
• The teachers should be trained to teach along
with practical techniques
• There is strong need to develop a mechanism
to assess the learning level at school.
• Policies should be made keeping in mind the
external factors that might be playing a crucial
role behind the drop outs.
• Leakages should be immediately identified.
• Local government body should be given more
What needs to be eradicated
• The social discrimination
• The gender bias
• Improper management
• Bad infrastructure
• Minimum usage of teaching aids
• High cost of schooling
• High level of increment of private schools