While the gross enrolment ratio (GER) for elementary schools has increased from 81.6 in 2001 to 93.03 in 2018-19 and stands at 102.1 in 2019-2020, overall retention is 74.6 per cent for elementary education and 59.6 per cent for secondary education in 2019-20, states the UNESCO 2021 State of the Education Report for India: No Teachers, No Class.
“Quality of education is the main challenge of the next decade when it comes to improving overall educational standards, retention, transition, and equity in gaining academic excellence. Hence the focus of this decade on teachers and teaching,” read the report, which was launched today.
The report added, “The use of technology in education for the purpose of teaching and learning has emerged as important, but this has also exposed a range of issues too like lack of devices and Internet bandwidth for a significant proportion of students, lack of preparedness of teachers in the use of technology, and lack of resources in most Indian languages.” “In about 15 years, 27 per cent of the current workforce will need to be replaced. The workforce has a deficit of over 1 million teachers (at current student strength), and is likely to need to grow overall given the shortages of teachers in certain education levels and subjects such as early childhood education,
special education, physical education, music, arts, and curricular streams of vocational education,” the report said. The overall availability of computing devices (desktops or laptops) in school is 22 per cent for all India, with rural areas seeing much lower provisioning (18 per cent) than urban areas (43 per cent). Access to the internet in schools is 19 per cent all over India – only 14 per cent in rural areas compared to 42 percent in urban areas.