A bad education report is an eye-opener for many students, but for the majority of the population, it’s a warning sign that the school system isn’t ready for the challenges ahead.
The government’s latest rankings of world’s best and worst education systems have left many questioning whether they’re doing enough to address the problems they’re facing.
While the US and Europe have been able to tackle the underlying issues, a lack of investment and funding has resulted in a sharp drop in the quality of teaching, learning and research in India.
The report, released in April, said that India has a long way to go to become a global leader in higher education.
The report noted that India is one of the least educated countries in the world, with a population of 1.3 billion, with more than half of students not getting a high school diploma or university degree.
In many states, schools and universities remain inaccessible to poor students and students living in rural areas.
It said that more than 30 per cent of all students in rural India don’t have access to a primary or secondary school, while nearly one in four children do not have access at all to a university.
The Education Department of the Centre for Science Education (CSE) has launched a project to improve India’s education system and said that the government would soon release the report and recommendations.
“We have a number of issues that we have identified and will address with a focus on ensuring the education system is up to date and ready for students to succeed in the global economy,” a spokesperson said.
But the rankings are a reminder that despite reforms to improve the education sector, India is still struggling to create the workforce needed for a fast-growing economy.
The average salary for a teacher in India was just Rs.2,500 last year, which is just Rs 4,000 more than in the US.
According to the OECD, the median salary for teaching is Rs.24,000, while the median income for a university student is just $9,000.
The US ranked fifth in the education rankings, and the OECD also ranked India seventh, which has an education system that is still behind many of its peers in terms of educational attainment.
The US, Germany and Australia also have higher average salary and average household income than India, according to the US Department of Education.
In the UK, the average salary is $72,800, which equals more than $70,000 for a family of four.
The Department of Human Resources and Training said the government’s priority is to improve education in India by providing more resources to teachers, teachers training and instituting a new curriculum.
“There is a need for more investment in teaching and training, and a new framework to develop a new teaching and learning model,” said Kailash Kumar, director, human resources and training department.