How India’s overseas education system is failing to meet international standards
NEW DELHI: A new report from the Overseas Education Council of India (OEICI) says India’s education system has been “stuck in the past”, which has not delivered on the promises of the government to improve it.
The OEICI report says the government has not been able to deliver on the promise of creating an education system in which students can learn abroad at their own pace and in the context of their personal and family needs.
While India has been ranked fifth in the world for the number of international students it has, its education system does not match the OECD average, and India is ranked in the bottom 10 of the world in terms of the proportion of students who can be found at international schools.
The OECD average for India is around 55 per cent, and while India’s is 54 per cent.
The OECD average is much higher in terms for students who are not eligible for international education.
The report says this reflects India’s system of private private school and non-government education institutions.
“The private school system has become the dominant option in India and has become a dominant option for the education system,” said Dr Gopal Subramaniam, the chairman of the OEIPI.
“The Indian private school sector is growing and is becoming an even larger market share in the country,” Subramana said.
“If the government is going to give an assurance that the government will bring about a change in the system, then the private schools need to be given a share of the system.”
“There are not enough students at the private school level,” he said.
India has one of the lowest enrolment levels of students in the OECD, the OEs report said, adding that it has not had enough funding to ensure that all students at private schools have access to adequate primary and secondary education.
“It is evident that there are still not enough teachers in India to deliver quality education,” Subra said.
The report also points to the fact that there is no clear plan to increase the number or quality of teachers in the Indian private schools, or to make the educational system more inclusive.
“There is no plan to give more quality teachers to the private sector and the government cannot even make the promise to give them an incentive,” Subras report said.
India’s private schools are also being neglected in the education sector, according to the OEPI.
India’s government has a large number of private schools and private primary schools, but the government does not seem to be interested in making a concerted effort to increase its number of students at these schools, said Subramanyam.
The education system also has a problem of not meeting the needs of the poor.
“Private schools are not providing a quality education to the poor,” he told Al Jazeera.
“There is not enough money to get a lot of quality teachers, but they don’t want to invest in quality education.”
“What the government needs to do is provide a better education to all students, and not just those in the upper class,” Subsubramanyaniam said.
“This is a serious issue.
There is a huge gap between the rich and the poor in India,” he added.
The country’s education minister, Rajnath Singh, who is the chairman member of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), is expected to take up the issue of teaching and learning in schools on Wednesday at the Centre for Teaching Excellence and Excellence in Higher Education (CTEHE).
The government has been working on increasing the number and quality of primary and higher education teachers and is also looking to add more teachers to private primary education institutions in the near future.
“This is the time to get the focus on the education of students and not on the money spent on teaching and training teachers,” Subrams report said.(With inputs from PTI)