STATE OF EDUCATION: A tale of two cities/states

5,680 schools in Kerala are facing closure due to shortage of students. As per the report published in The New Indian Express, 2,564 government schools and 3,116 government-aided schools experienced shortage of students in the year 2017-18, that is, 1,859 LP schools, 453 UP schools and 252 high schools (in the government sector) and 2,401 LP schools, 605 UP schools and 110 high schools (in the government-aided schools) failed to enroll the required number of students.

Further, education department’s study concluded that there were 13 teachers for every 30 students in uneconomic schools. As per the Right to Education (RTE) Act, the Pupil-Teacher Ratio (PTR) should be 30 or less in schools with fewer than 200 enrolled students, and 40 for schools with higher enrolment.

Moving to Maharashtra state’s Pune city. A survey was conducted by the education department of the Pune Zilla Parishad (ZP) recently wherein it discovered the alarming state of some schools in the city. As per the survey, 498 classrooms in 242 schools are in a dilapidated condition. The majority of these classrooms were found in ZP schools in Junnar, Daund, Haveli and Maval talukas. Such is their condition that officials have ordered them to close down these rooms immediately. Schools have been told to make alternate temporary arrangements till the time these classrooms are rebuilt.

“There is no option other than reconstructing these rooms. We have already sent a proposal for funds under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) to the union government through the state government office,” said education officer Sunil Kurhade to The Times of India.

The survey was ordered following the injury of three students  at the Narayanpur ZP School.

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