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Government schools need to upgrade themselves

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Lack of infrastructure or lack of interest to maintain the available infrastructure has been on the rise in government run educational institutions. This very reason has been forcing parents to pull out their kids from government schools and admit them in private schools. Compared to government schools, the private schools always stand a chance to emerge favourites among the parents and their children due to their state-of-the art facilities and their determination towards keeping pace with the new technological developments.

The present scenario in government schools as per ASER report

Government schools are facing a huge set back recently because of hi-tech private schools. According to the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2014, the percentage of enrolment in government schools in rural areas has decreased from 72.9% in 2007 to 63.1% in 2014. Whereas the private schools registered a considerable rise in enrolment from 20.2% in 2007 to 30.7% in 2014.

ASER also mentions that in addition to the need to increase the percentage of enrolment substantially in order to achieve universalization of education, concerns about the decline in enrolment in government schools need to be identified and addressed. Decline in enrolment in government schools and some shift to private schools might be largely related to the poor quality of education offered in government schools because it is free or offered at a nominal fee.

Every Cloud has a silver lining

As the government has been seriously considering of closing thousands of government schools due to the reasons given above, there is one government school at Kallambella in Sira of Tumkur district that would make the government rethink over its decision. It has emerged a successful school in terms of hi-tech education. The aforementioned government school has beaten all odds to stand out from many other schools of its kind. The students here use tablets and teachers deliver lectures using LCD screens.

With the help of generous donors, the school is now a proud owner of computer lab, well equipped library, smart class and laboratory. The students of class 5 to 7 can view their syllabus on their tabs.

According to Kannada Prabha, the school expected to admit 250 children but the number has doubled, and now there are 530 children studying in this school. Another astonishing development is that close to 120 children from different private schools have joined this technologically advanced government school and are benefiting from its hi-tech infrastructure just as they would do in their private schools.

Introspection Alert!

The quality of education determines the quality of human capital and a lot more effort needs to be invested in order to improve the propagation of education in India through enrolment and improvement in the quality of education in both government and private schools.

A related issue is professional qualification and training received by the teachers. According to the latest report by the Unified-District Information System for Education (U-DISE) on 'School Education in India', for the country as whole, only 79 percent of teachers are professionally qualified. In order to meet the expectations of parents, children and achieve maximum literacy, there is a dire need of training both qualified and under-qualified teachers.

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