Although the world possesses more knowledge than it has ever had, not everyone can benefit from it. Countries have made significant progress in extending access to education at all levels and boasting school enrollment rates, and basic literacy skills have greatly improved.
Among youth aged 15-24, the literacy rate improved globally between 1990 and 2016,
increasing from 83.2% to 91.4%. Completion rates in primary school were 89.6% by 2016,
and has witnessed a decline in recent years dipping from 90.7% in 2012. In addition, one in
five children, adolescents, and youth are out of school, including 64 million children of
primary school age, 61 million of lower secondary school age and 138 million of upper
secondary age. In India, great progress has been achieved toward universalizing primary
education, with females’ enrolment and completion rates in primary and elementary school
improving. The net enrolment ratio in primary education for boys and girls was at 100%,
while at the national level, the youth literacy rate was 94% for males and 92% for females.
The new national Education Policy and Sustainable Development Goal 4 share the goals of
universal quality education and lifelong learning. The flagship government scheme, Sarva
Shiksha Abhiyan, is aimed at achieving universal quality education for all Indians, and is
complemented in this effort by targeted schemes on nutritional support, higher education, and teacher training.
Importance of Quality Education
A quality education is the foundation of sustainable development, and therefore of the
Sustainable Development Goals. Education is a force multiplier as a policy intervention
because it promotes self-sufficiency, stimulates economic growth by improving skills, and
improves people’s lives by providing possibilities for better livelihoods. The Sustainable
Development targets for 2030 aim for ensuring that all boys and girls complete primary and
secondary education, as well as ensuring that everyone has equal access to high-quality
technical and vocational education. Enhancing access and improving quality will require
policy initiatives, as well as addressing pertinent hurdles such as gender disparities, food
hardship, and armed conflict.
Story of Dheer
This is a story of a 10 year boy Dheer. Dheer studies in class 4 and is a very brilliant student.
He always gets good marks in his exams and got many prizes for his excellence in different
fields. But one day his whole life got changed, when his father passed away in a road
accident. The only person left in his family was his mother Sunita who was a housewife.
Slowly the financial issues started raising due to which Dheer had to leave the school in
which he was studying and joined the government school. The government school does not
has that much facilities and the teachers were also poor. They used to tell the students to
come to join their tuitions. Dheer’s financial situation was not in support of his tuition fees so
he discussed it with his friend Rajesh about it. Rajesh suggested him to earn money for his
expenses. He took Dheer to the place where he used work ,a Dhaba. While going to Dhaba
where Rajesh used to work there Dheer saw so many kids who were doing different jobs for
supporting their families and education. Dheer started working in the same dhaba with
Rajesh. The owner of the dhaba was not a good man he used to scold Dheer a lot and
sometimes cuts the money from his salary. Gradually the situation went harder. Dheer hardly
gets the time For his studies. Then after some time he started his own stall of snacks to earn
money. Due to all these things Dheer has to leave his studies in between.
Challenges of Quality Education in India
1.Lack of infrastructure
Approximately 95.2 per cent of schools are not yet compliant with the complete set of RTE
infrastructure indicators according to survey conducted in 2010.They lacks drinking water
facilities, a functional common toilet, and do not have separate toilets for girls.
2.Number of boards causes non uniformity of curriculum throughout India so maintenance of
quality standard is quite difficult.
3.Poor global ranking of institutions
Only 4 universities are featured in first 400 .This is largely because of high faculty-student
ratio and lack of research capacity.
4.System of education
Education is information based rather than knowledge based. The whole focus is on
cramming information rather than understanding it and analyzing it.
5.Gap between education provided and industry required education
Industry faces a problem to find suitable employee as education provided is not suitable for
directly working in industry so before that a company is required to spend large amount on
providing training for employee.
Traditional Indian society suffers from many kind of discrimination so there are many
hurdles in education of unprivileged sections of society like women, SC, ST and minority
7.Costly higher education
Very minimal amount of subsidy is provided for higher education so if student seeks to get
chances of higher education still he misses out because of lack of economical resources
8.Inadequate government Funding
The demand for financial resources far exceeds the supply. Very small amount is available
for innovative programs and ideas.
This is not just a story of Dheer it’s a story of every second child who faces poverty. Some of
them have to leave study like Dheer and some don’t get the opportunity. But we can eradicate this problem from our society by taking different initiative.
1.Boost free education
Poverty is one of the major obstructions in the path of education of many children. And only
education can remove it. So our government should take some major and frequent steps
towards making education free for the underprivileged children.
2.Establish more schools
More school should be established in different remote areas where access to education is a
barrier. Government can do joint venture to built these school in faster rate.
3.More government spending
India targeted towards devoting 6% share of the GDP towards the educational sector, but the performance is not upto the expectation. Government need to spend more in this sector.
Education provided should meet needs of student. Like in the case of Dheer the government teachers were lethargic and was more interested in earning than educating their students.
5.Inclusive education system
Growth in education sector should incorporate all sections of society like rural, urban poor,
woman Backward classes etc. Education is the right of everyone. Hence it should be granted
Educational policy need frequent update. It should include various aspects of development.
Government should release different schemes to attract children towards education and
should spread awareness among unprivileged children.
About The Author
Manikchand Pahade and Shweta Kumari
The Stambh Organisation,India