Annual Status of Education Report 2006 (source Pratham)
Annual Status of Education Report - 2006 , which involved a sample survey where over 320,000 households were interviewed in detail across 15,845 villages in 556 districts, has just been released for the year 2006, and that shows enrolment levels in the 6-14 year old age group are broadly the same as last year, at around 93 per cent.
Nearly 1.4 crore children are out of school; this situation is especially worse in Bihar, Rajashtan and Jharkand, where 10% or more of school-age children are not enrolled.
- The gender gap in the percentage of children out of school, however, has dropped. In 2001, it was estimated that 2 out of 3 dropouts were girls, but this study finds that only a little more than half (52-55%) of the children out of school are gilrs.
- In three out of four schools visited by volunteers collecting data, the teachers were present, as they are expected to be. In several states, all the teachers assigned to surveyed schools were present. Unexpectedly, however, teacher absenteeism was high in Kerala, where 3 out of 10 schools visited did not have any teacher present.
- The really worrisome findings from ASER relate not to attendance and demographics, but to learning. The tests of reading ability were quite simple (a short paragraph at the grade 2 level), but even then 35% of children aged 7-14 could not pass this test, and 60% of the children could not read a simple story, also at grade 2 level. This situation was in fact worse in states like Tamilnadu and Gujarat, where the usual indicators (school availability, enrolment, teachers, etc.) are all good. Students in Bihar and Chhatisgarh fared better, despite really poor education infrastructure indicators for their states.
First, ASER 2006 found that
93.4% children in 6 to 14 age group are enrolled in school across
while private schools provide education to 16.4% children.
The news on basic learning – reading and arithmetic was not good.
35% of all children in the age group
7-14 could not read simple paragraphs at Standard I level and
close to 52% could not read a short story at a Standard II level of difficulty.
50% of children enrolled in Standard II to V in government primary schools and
38% in private schools could not solve a two digit subtraction.
Average teacher attendance in schools was about 75%,
while average student attendance was about 71%.
75% schools had a mid-day meal scheme and
in textbook availability was 85% for 5th standard students.
66% of primary schools had water,
while only 42% had functioning toilets.
In short, the while the positive is that children have access to schools and are going to schools, the negative point is that they are not at all learning well in schools.
Shifts towards private schools in some states.
● Eight states have more than 30% children in non-government run schools whether primary
(I-V) or upper primary (VI-VIII) - Manipur (56.7%), Nagaland (46.1), Kerala (45.2%),
Meghalaya (44.6%), Goa (44.65), Haryana (40.35), Punjab (37.25) and UP (30.25). The
states differ in the ratio of aided to unaided schools.
● Ten states have between 15% and 30% children in non-government run schools.
● ASER records big shifts in the last year into private schools. An increase of more than 5
percentage points was recorded in Punjab (16+), Goa (15.35+), Haryana (9.8+) and
Karnataka (6.1+). The shift to private schools has been at the expense of government
Overall, more boys (20.4%) are in private schools than girls (16.8%). For the 7-10 age group, if we
compare percentage of boys enrolled in private school with that of girls, the largest differences by
gender are in Punjab (50% boys and 43% girls) and Haryana (51% boys and 39% girls).