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Which is the state with the lowest literacy in India?
Bihar is the state with the lowest literacy rate in India. The literacy rate recorded in the state stands around 61.8% which is the lowest in our country.
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Factors contributing to the low literacy rate in the state
- Lack of primary education teachers.
- Government expenditure on elementary school education is very poor.
- The third most populous state and poverty looms large in the state.
- Most of the schools are run by the government almost 90%, and they do not have adequate infrastructures.
- Private schools fare is better, but they are very few in number.
- School dropout rates among students from 5 to 14 is very high.
- Teachers are allotted on temporary basis by the government to provide them low-salaries.
- Budget allocation for enrolling teachers is very poor.
- Budget only gives more importance to uniform, books, stationery of children.
Let us now look into why Bihar has such a poor literacy rate in our country and why the situation isn’t improving over the years. We have all been to schools, our parents have funded our education, they have provided us with all the necessary equipment’s to aid in our studies, given us the best infrastructure at home etc.
But not everybody is as lucky as it seems. Lot of villages in India suffer from poverty, unemployment, lack of proper facilities, lack of a proper shelter, lack of education etc. Adding to these factors, the government grants also do not reach the required persons in time and hence the situation only worsens with time.
The situation is quite similar in Bihar as well. The education system in Bihar hasn’t changed much over the years. The student to teacher ratio is so huge that the gap in education is largely seen.
We can notice that even if teachers are present, they do not attend classes regularly as there is no check and nobody to monitor or watch their job.
The government appoints teachers, who take leaves more often than required and hence the situation has become worst over the years.
These teachers demand regular incomes from the government though not reporting to their duties correctly. While the government considers this a serious matter, it has also looked into other ways of replacing such wrong doings in the state.
The state machinery has appointed temporary teachers and has offered lucrative incomes to let them function the education system smoothly in the state.
This may have worked to a small extent. But for the larger part, education still remains a distant dream. We all know that elementary education is the base or the firm ground upon which a person builds his skills and knowledge.
The root of this elementary education begins with right coaching and guidance. There are no proper mentors or no adequate facilities at the state to cater all these needs.
Elementary schools have no basic infrastructure facilities, no proper classrooms and no good teachers. They are left with thatched buildings converted to schools to make room for small classrooms.
The main problem with the education system in Bihar is that 90% of the schools are government-run schools and there are hardly any private run schools in the state.
Though private schools are better in all aspects when compared to government schools, they have absolutely no encouragement from the government.
School dropout rates at the primary education level are so high that there is no doubt why the state lags behind in education.
What measures should the government take to reform the education system in Bihar?
- Teachers should be provided attractive salaries on permanent basis.
- Budget allocation for the education sector should improve.
- Accountability for teachers in permanent roles should be considered against allocating more funds for textbooks and uniforms.
- Infrastructure facilities should be drastically improved at government schools.
- Private schools should be given opportunities to open new schools.
- Well-educated and capable teachers should be allotted in the education sector.
- The government should prepare a report every year about the improvements undertaken in the current year and follow guidelines to make changes in the coming year.
Of late, the government is waking up to bring in reforms to the education system in the state. Plenty of schemes have been introduced to bring back school dropouts back to school and help them continue their education.
Appointment of good teachers, who are knowledge oriented and professional by nature, will help achieve good results at each level.
Children should be provided with quality education and at least basic infrastructure facilities should be granted to bring in more children to school.
Budget allocation in the state gives the least number of funds for education. Primary education especially takes a big beating when it comes to attracting funds to improve school facilities for children.
The government spends adequately on providing uniforms and books to children. But when there are no proper faculties to handle classes the right way, there is absolutely no use in providing these additional tools.
Responsibility is a big thing to be achieved. Running plenty of schools without organizing for its right facilities and infrastructure along with non-appointment of good teachers is like sending children to school just to have fun and frolic without any education.
The budget should improvise its allocation for reforming the education system in the state. Good teachers should be allocated on permanent basis at schools and told strictly to handle classes without fail.
The government should report its findings and discuss with panel of experts to change the education scenario in the state.
Education is the need of the hour and without achieving proper schooling, a man becomes totally isolated in today’s knowledge driven world.
Education opens a door full of opportunities and the state should act wisely in improving basic facilities of schools. The focus should be on implementing right schemes at every level of education.