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» Project : Opportunities & Challenges in Education Sector in India
Project : Opportunities & Challenges in Education Sector in India
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Project : Opportunities & Challenges in Education Sector in India
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An Essay on Education Retooling of Education System in India Definition: Education is any act or experience that has formative effect on the mind, character or physical ability of an individual/recipient. In technical sense, Education is the process by which society deliberately transfers its accumulated knowledge, skills & values from one generation to another. Etymologically, the word Education is derived from Latin word “Educere”, which means “to bring out or bring forth what is within”, in other words “to bring out potential”; and Latin word “ducere”, which means “to lead”. Thus Education is about grooming up the mind, character & physical ability of an individual and instilling him/her with knowledge, skills & values to bring forth his/her potential to lead. The process of education is delivered through effective utilization of Verbal, Written & Kinaesthetic skills (now-a-days, technology is also playing an increasingly important role) of the trainer to make effective impact of the senses of the trainee, as a result of which the abilities of individual is enhanced. Education can be acquired through Formal, Informal or Experiential method. Formal Education is one, which acquired with an accomplished trainer, who guides/leads the process of learning of the recipient. This is normally done by placing suitably organized information & evidence for the recipient, by debating & challenging any apprehensions or doubts, and through suitable demonstrations & controlled experiments. Certificates, Diploma & Degrees are conferred on the individual in the formal education system & are distinguishing feature of this system. Informal Education is acquired through contemplation, observation, curiosity & logical reasoning, experimentation, Real life experiences & Self study. Experiential education is acquired as apprenticeship in a profession or trade under a supervisor, in experience sharing sessions (formal or informal) at work place or trade/industry seminars, by going through manuals, communication & directives that are part & parcel of any work place or industry. Education is categorized as Primary, Secondary & Tertiary Education. Primary education is the one that is given up to 10-11 years of age under the formal education. Basic Language & Mathematics skills, elementary understanding of Natural Science & an impression of consciousness about the society around the child through knowledge of Social Science is imparted to the child during the Primary Education process. A child’s logical thinking ability, communication skills, Value system, manners & curtsies, Arithmetic skills and ability to discern or critical thinking ability are sought to be nurtured as a result of the process of Primary Education. Secondary Education process leads to further development of the subjects taught in the primary education further is imparted till 17-18 years of age. Like the Language skills are nurtured to develop more sophisticated skills in Grammar & Comprehension along with verbal & written communication skills. The Mathematics skills include not only arithmetic but geometry, trigonometry, calculus, logarithms, concepts of accounting as well as some other relatively more sophisticated concept. Science is taught to develop critical thinking ability through systematic examination of natural phenomenon along with technological advancements of the society with knowledge of structure & composition of different states of
matter, botany, zoology, physics and computer science among others. Social Science education dwells in geography, political science & awareness of Law, anthropology, economics with appreciation of various religion & belief systems, cultures & social phenomenon like casteism, racism etc. including history. The idea is to instil confidence in a child through realization of his inherent abilities, equip him to nurture his abilities and aptitude further, help him understand social, cultural, regulatory, political & legal systems of the society with social skills like organizing in teams or groups, leading such groups, dexterity, sportsman/competitive spirit & discipline, hygiene and sensitivity towards & appreciation of others. Tertiary education seeks to nurture & improve financial productivity of an individual. Ideally no age limit should be prescribed for such education as its demand is a by-product of selfactualization endeavour of an individual. It prepares him to recognize his/her ‘needs & wants’ and acquire skills to further his abilities & aptitude to meet those needs by negotiating his space in society. Advanced knowledge of Engineering, Medicine, Science & Technology, Social Sciences including Arts, Economics, and History etc., Language & Communications skills or specialized knowledge of any subject helps him achieve his space. Also included are Vocational skills, Craftsmanship, Entrepreneurship, skills in Accounts & Trade & commerce, Technician skills in various trades & industry and ability to render services needed by the society are all part of Tertiary Education. Knowledge & Traits that are sought to be nurtured are analytical ability, innovation & experimentation spirit, skills to research, negotiation & management skills, with ability to understand behaviour of organizations & systems in the relevant trade; various support systems, local & global regulations guiding the development of the trade/industry; knowledge of various players & competitive postures in the trade/industry; demands of the society & ethical issues associate with the trade/industry; technological developments & challenges in the industry etc. The idea of Tertiary Education is to convert a human being into a professional (ranging from skilled worker to scientist/researcher).
In summary, aim of education is to develop new frontiers of the subject or to extend the boundaries of the subject further to support human pursuits in that direction. It arms an individual to the well being of self as well as that of the society. Improvement of Financial productivity, moral, ethical & spiritual values & systems and bankable skills are some of the results of education. Apart, the rulers/governments also try to push in development of nationalistic spirit, respect for their leaders, ideals & philosophy, respect & understanding for “National History (or Nationalistic view of History)”, “Laws, Political & Governing Architecture”, “National Policies, Values and Symbols” among other items to further “National interest or governance agenda”. Education needs to sustain the Interest of the recipient, help equip him to develop his Aptitude & Skills, give guidance about how Approach the subject & pursue Self Interest & Goals for further advancement, challenge his mental & physical faculties to further Research the subject to deduce new knowledge or understanding and bring forth creative solutions to solve needs of the society.
Meaning/Definitions of word marked in Bold: Interest: Getting engaged to or with; Get excited or passionate about a person, object, or phenomenon. Aptitude: A natural or acquired disposition or capacity for a particular purpose; A tendency to a particular action or effect. Skill: Knowledge of Principles & Techniques with sufficient ability to judge suitability of a particular technique in a giver situation or circumstance with power to adapt. Approach: Ability to identify & access an opportunity; To draw or push self to a desired situation from any given point. Approach pre-supposes knowledge & understanding of the given situation, regulatory & competitive environment, knowledge of support systems, ethical dilemmas & behaviour of various interest groups as well as prevalent incentive systems and motivation amongst various players etc. Research: Systematic investigation to establish facts; A detailed study of the subject especially in order to discover new information or to reach a new understanding; Gathering & analyzing a body of information or data and extracting new meaning from it or developing a unique solution to problem or cases. Scope: India’s labour force has reached 425 million in 2010 and will continue to expand over the next two decades. Some projections suggest that the labour force increase will amount to 7.08.5 million a year. Though going by the population growth numbers of 20 years previous, we shall arrive at some 15 million new labour forces joining the labour market. India has started to clock 8-9 % GDP growth (2004-08), however growth of employment has been only around 1-2 per cent. Many large enterprises have been shedding labour while the capacity of agriculture to absorb workers is minimal. It is only in boom years of 2007 & 08 only, that we probably added enough jobs for all new people joining the labour market. However, much of these jobs were in unorganized sector. Then we also have around 65-85 million persons without jobs. In addition, a significant number of people are underemployed. The unemployment rates among youth are higher, reaching in certain states, as much as 35 per cent against the national average of 13 per cent. There is an urgent need to generate around 15-25 million of new jobs each year i.e. just to stop the problem from attaining crisis levels & lead to social explosion.
Thus it is important for Policy makers, to not only liberalize new business/ industry sectors, so that they start throwing up new employment opportunities, but they also need to ensure that our youths have the requisite skills to sustain themselves productively in the cut-throat business environment. Thus there is an urgent need to relook at the Education & Skills development system in India to ensure that our children receive proper Training to be able to negotiate with the demands of the changing time. India has about 550 million people under the age of 25 years. The Gross Enrollment Ratio is 96% at the primary level; however Dropout rate is approx. 32% at Primary level while it is 63% at the Secondary level. Only 11% of the population is receives any kind of Tertiary Education (in a Government recognized institutions) compared to the world average of 23%. India spends approx. 3-4% of its GDP on Education which is a bit lower than some of the developed & developing countries where the expenditure is about 6-8%. Given the higher proportion of youths is India, the expenditure on Education & Training may be raised to a higher level; up to 8-10% so as to meet the training needs of the young population. It should also be noted that percentage of Private expenditure on Education is rising. It was about 1525% in the decade of 70s, reached about 30-35% in the 90s & is currently almost neck-toneck (45-50%) with the Public/Govt. expenditure. Looking at the rising trend, further rise in (disposable) income level of the population, precarious state of Public/Govt. finances and favourable disposition of the attitude of the population, it can be concluded that privately funded education can be one of the big growth area in the overall economy. The sheer numbers of people in need to improve their skills with large number of people getting added up every year, points to the potential opportunity in the sector. Development of this sector has potential to not only employ a large number of people within itself (since education is employment intensive) but it also has potential to raise productivity across almost all other sectors of the economy (though exact contribution cannot be easily measured) and improve the quality of life through improved services. Healthcare, Tourism, Financial Services, Construction & Real estate, Retail & Wholesale Trading, Agriculture & Food Supplies, Animal Husbandry, Forestry, Logistics, House Keeping & Décor, Craftsmanship etc. are among some of the industries where productivity can go up several times with availability of suitably trained manpower without drawing much from other factors of production. And off course, almost all other industries can also do with well trained or better trained manpower as well. So far, Education sector has been a classic case of neglect. It is a sector which has been a mess due to over regulation & resultant undersupply or sub-standard supply. Though, to be fair, Education sector has also seen some innovative corporate action with reasonable success. To begin the story here, it may be pointed that the Indian state makes it incumbent upon its government to offer basic education to all its children below fourteen years of age. Responsibility of education is shared jointly between the state & central government. Lack of resources has been the explanation for the limited capacity of the government to deliver. The government created various types of institutions to deliver education & results have been a mixed bag; with some excellent institutions with world class delivery (in terms of quality of students produced) while some where student’s time and Government’s resources are squandered with impunity. There also exists a robust private sector whose presence has largely been welcomed only by the richer sections of society. The poorer classes have not been able to afford the services of these private schools/institutions and therefore scoff at the sector. The government sector suffers from the apathy, neglect, corruption & unprofessional conduct of the large government bureaucracy and is in state of morass. Government has regulations pertaining constitution of organization for education in the private sector, regarding syllabi of what should be taught, regulates infrastructure requirements, has rights to inspect teaching, advises the kind of pay to be given to teaching staff and also conducts
examination of students at certain level at Secondary Education level(X & XII). It’s a classic case where an agency that fails to discharge its responsibility decides to play regulator and ensures that everyone else are playing under the same circumstances that results in cumulative failure of all. Naturally, the private sector remains harassed with the overarching government intervention. The education system in a state of moribund neglect till a few years ago, until the need for large number of trained people, by a single industry brought about a mindset change in the segment. Basically, it was India’s famed Information Technology industry which needed a vast army of trained code writers as well people who can run and work through the solutions offered by the industry. This required a large army of people which India’s state run higher education system was in no way equipped to provide. It didn’t have the resources or the willingness to invest in these resources either. It was then that some of the entrepreneurs rose up to the challenge. This led to start of “Vocational Training” institute in computers which facilitated people into jobs that they otherwise would not have been capable to deliver. The training models were not recognized by the Government (as a “Vocational Training Certification”) however, since the model was successful, it received wide spread support from the industry & students. These private institutions managed to avoid the ‘Red Tape’ of Indian bureaucracy by partnering industry & students while avoiding/ignoring Government mandated prescription for the vocational training sector. The ruling classes sensed the mood of the people and decided not to mess up with the emerging training institution till corrupt practices started gaining ground in the sector. During the middle of its Lifecycle, this model started offering more complex variety of education and also started receiving accolades from the industry for their training. As corruption & deceit started rearing their head, the government had to intervene, however not before liberalization of Higher education system via All India council of Technical Education route whereby the Private institutions certification got Government recognition & they were given a route to enter the system of Education in a regulated manner to impart Degree & Diplomas. The case/experience is shared to show the possibilities/opportunities & challenges in the Education & Training sector in India. Presently, though only open for the non-profit segment, Indian Education sector allows for non-government segment freedom to operate at all levels from Kindergarten to Schooling to Industrial training Centers, Polytechnics, Degree Colleges & Universities. Despite phenomenal capabilities, India is seriously handicapped with a very weak and narrow Knowledge base. With 12.3% gross enrolment ratio in Tertiary Education, as compared to 21% in China, 54.6% in developed countries and the world average of 23.2%. There is need to convert the huge manpower into a potent & productive human resource by expanding opportunities for youngsters. We need to develop a massive scale in Education sector in diverse fields such as science, technology, engineering, architecture, management etc. to reap the demographic dividends. This is possible only if we seriously undertake rapid reforms in the higher and technical education sector. Given the size of the market and ability to become a Global low cost destination for education (with English as mode of Teaching); the sector offers significant opportunities to grow several times its current size in coming few years.
History Education in Ancient India India has a long history of organized education. The Gurukul system of education is one of the oldest on earth but before that the guru shishya system was extant, in which students were
taught orally and the data would be passed from one generation to the next. Gurukuls were traditional Hindu residential schools of learning; typically the teacher's house or a monastery. The Vedas, Puranas, Ayurveda,Yoga, Kautilya's Arthasahtra are only some of the milestones that the traditional Indian knowledge system boasts of. Education under the system was free (and often limited to the higher castes), but students from well-to-do families paid Gurudakshina, a voluntary contribution after the completion of their studies. At the Gurukuls, the teacher imparted knowledge of Religion, Scriptures, Philosophy, Literature, Warfare, Statecraft, Mathematics, Medicine, Astrology and "History" ("Itihaas"). Only students belonging to Brahmin and Kshatriya communities were taught in these Gurukuls. However, the advent of Buddhism and Jainism brought fundamental changes in access to education with their democratic character. The first millennium and the few centuries preceding it saw the flourishing of higher education at Nalanda, Takshashila University, Ujjain, & Vikramshila Universities. Art, Architecture, Painting, Logic, mathematics, Grammar, Philosophy, Astronomy, Literature, Buddhism, Hinduism, Arthashastra (Economics & Politics), Law, and Medicine were among the subjects taught and each university specialized in a particular field of study. Takshila specialized in the study of medicine, while Ujjain laid emphasis on astronomy. Nalanda, being the biggest centre, handled all branches of knowledge, and housed up to 10,000 students at its peak. British records show that education was widespread in the 18th century, with a school for every temple, mosque or village in most regions of the country. The subjects taught included Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Theology, Law, Astronomy, Metaphysics, Ethics, Medical Science and Religion. The ancient system of learning didn’t follow any prescribed curriculum, thus allowed the students with freedom to pursue subjects of his interest & aptitude. Rigorous training under supervision of an expert Guru led to nurturing of skilled craftsman. The limitations imposed on social mobility due to rigid caste system, however draconian it may sound, but allowed for or even nurtured experimentation & research in the avocation, while at the same time helped in formulation of “approach” where the community imparted training is incentive system in the society/industry, in understanding of interest & motivation of various players, in managing overall risks. One probable outcome of the system was that the Ancient India was one of the foremost civilizations with its Craft in demand far & wide. Its Architecture, Legal, Political & Socio-cultural system was revered in other civilizations like Mesopotamia, Chinese & Egyptian Civilization. But scholars have questioned & challenged the proponent of the above theory on following grounds. The village pathshalas were often housed in shabby dwellings and taught by illqualified teachers. Instruction was limited mainly to the three Rs(Rote, Religion, Rituals) and the native mahajani /zamindari accounts. Printed books were not used, and most writing was done on palm leaf, plantain leaf, or on sand. There was no fixed class routine, timetable, or school calendar. There was no annual examination, pupils being promoted whenever the guru was satisfied of the scholar's attainments. There were no desks, benches, blackboards, or fixed seating arrangements. The Ancient Education system has further been criticized as elitist system tailored to the needs of Brahmin boys who were taught to Read & Write by a Brahmin teacher. The entire social & educational system was designed to catapult Brahmins to the pinnacle of the system and ensure their dominance. Thus system was failed to deliver upon one of the main delivery requirements of Education system i.e. identifying natural aptitude of the student & honing them into marketable skills & matured intellect. An effective system should result in social mobility (since students are free to pursue their interests) which the ancient system failed to provide. During the period of invasion, the systems were disrupted. Advent of new religions, such as
Buddhism, Jainism etc. led to further alienation of the lower strata from the ancient Social & Educational system. The Brahmins lost their status & position at the pinnacle of the society as well as the incentives that accrued to them. The development of Mathematics, Science, Arthashastra, Literature etc. which were pursued by Brahmins suffered as a result and India ceded its status of the foremost nation in the comity of nations. By the time Mughals invaded & took over India, the Education system had declined fairly from its past glorious phase. Idian had no knowledge of the latest techniques in warfare like usage of Gun-Powder & usage of Guns (Topkhana). Over a long period there was no university system existing in the country or organised education system, for that matter. The University system regenerated only when the British restarted the system of Education which is prevalent today as modern Education system. Even though India’s Ancient Education system “ Guru-Shishya Parampara” has declined but it can still be seen in action in certain sectors. It dominates segments like Spiritual Education, Yoga/Physical & Mental training & Relaxation, Traditional Song (Sangeet), Music (Instruments training) & Dance (Nritya) education, In the traditional Song, Music & Dance space, though India’s formal education sector has tried to make deep in-roads (we have University awarding degrees & even Doctorate research, however People have continued to prefer “Guru-Shishya model” where one teacher continues to work diligently over the student throughout his/her Education period & imparts him with skills, with information on how to approach the art to develop further & identify opportunities in the life. We also have the system of “Ustad” in various trades like Auto Mechanic, barber, Tailoring, Metal work etc. who recruit young pupils to train them for these ‘Life” skills. The poor in Rural as well as Urban areas prefer their children to be trained by these “Ustad” over the Formal Education system primarily because of ‘costs’ but also because they see little value in the formal system to be able to impart ‘Life’ or Earning skills. The elite in India scoff at the system as they see it as ‘Exploitation” of the child who is made to work on the ‘Shop floor’ during the process. The system though struggling with the ‘jeers’ that the Teachers and elite throw at it (inspite of the fact that formal education has no solution for the students of this segment), however ‘Ustad’ system has now also got to deal with ‘Free Mid-day Meal’ scheme of the Government of India for the Primary Education sector which is able to wean away the student due to the ‘incentive’ of Meal. However, it has survived and continues to “Skill” India with its offering (Ills of the system notwithstanding). Careful thought must go to about this segment before deciding about Reforms. We may want to develop a strategy to reform this piece of reform the informal education system to rid it of its ills, rather than reform the Education system to rid it from the “Guru-shishya or Ustad” system. Education in British India British records show that indigenous education was still widespread in the 18th century, with a school for every temple, mosque or village in most regions of the country. The subjects taught included Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Theology, Law, Astronomy, Metaphysics, Ethics, Medical Science and Religion. The schools were attended by students that represented all classes of society. Pre-British educational institutions were maintained by grants of revenue-free land by the state/ruling class. The East India Company, with its policy of maximizing land revenue, stopped this and thus starved the Indian education system of its financial resources which led to further De-generation of the Ancient Education system. When Royal British Government took governance of India from East India Company, it derecognized the old system and stopped any incentives for them or for the students who turned
out through the old system. So the decline which had probably started in the mid- 1700s & continued since then brought about almost total annihilation is early 1800s. By the 1820s neither the village schools nor the tols or madrasas were the vital centres of learning. Thus Ancient Education system had failed to survive this body blow. Gandhi is said to have described the traditional educational system as a beautiful tree that was destroyed during British rule. The newer era of higher education started with the British initiative in the 19th century. Lord Macaulay (1835) through the Macaulay minutes stressed upon the closure of institutions of oriental learning (though the British didn’t shut down Indian institutions enmasse but they did nothing to prevent them from degeneration which ultimately led to their extinction) and then a few colleges at different places were established by the British regime. In July 1854, Woods Despatch had proposed establishment of universities in India. Accordingly, Calcutta, Bombay and Madras Universities were established in the year 1857 which are felicitating their 150th year. Some of the renowned Educational institutes like St. Xavier's College, Sydenham College, Wilson College and Elphinstone College have been established by the British in India. Quite a few well meaning Indian intellectuals had supported the British Education system which the regarded as more open & allowed for social mobility. Prominent among them was Raja Rammohan Roy, who wrote to the governor-general, Lord Amherst, requesting that he not spend government funds on starting a Sanskrit College in Calcutta but rather employ "European Gentlemen of talent and education to instruct the natives of India in Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, Chemistry, Anatomy and other useful sciences. Detractors of British Education system argue that it was "To consolidate their hold on India, the British set upon establishing an intermediary race of Indians, whom they could entrust with their work at the middle level echelons and who could one day be convenient instruments to rule by proxy, or semi-proxy. They see British Education as tool to shape these British clones. They demonize Macaulay as someone who had very little regard for Hindu culture and education: Mr. Macaulay is portrayed in poor light quoting epithets such as “Hindus have a literature of small intrinsic value, hardly reconcilable with morality and full of monstrous superstitions." credited to him. Some reforms & development efforts were also witnessed in the Education sector in British India. In 1882 the first Indian Education Commission under the Chairmanship of W W Hunter was established. The report dealt with indigenous education, primary education, secondary education and university education. In 1913 the Education Policy was developed by the then British Government, which proposed establishment of new universities within each province. Accordingly, the Central Hindu College was converted to Banaras Hindu University in 1916 and Mohammedan Anglo Oriental College into Aligarh Muslim University in 1920. Universities were also stared at Mysore, Hyderabad and Patna. India’s first Medical College came up in Calicut in 1942-43. This was in response to shortage of Doctors during the second World War for the British Soldiers. The Sergent Report of 1944 was an effort to develop a national system of education in India, which suggested formation of University Grants Commission. Although in theory, British Education system was liberal, allowed for equal opportunities to everyone armed with a Degree & skills in English language. However, in practice the way the applied the policy, the elitist tendencies were reinforced. Firstly, the Education system or Higher Education required a stay in Hostels as prominent colleges were available in few cities. Besides, there were a host of other expenses like Tutorials, Books etc. which the poor
couldn’t afford. The British were also keen to preserve the position of the privileged to enlist their support for the British rule and thus did little to upset them. The elite then helped British fasten their grip on India. Also, the system relied on imported books, text & tutors. These had no relevance to local situations in India and failed to provide any ready reference point to the students except in some fields like some topics of the Natural sciences, Mathematics etc. Secondly, the system put special emphasis of examination (especially written examination) as a tool to judge merit of the student. Third, the system offered little choice to students in terms of selection subjects of their aptitude. Lastly, the Score in the examination was almost the sole criterion for selection of a candidate for job (along with knowledge of English). Thus, it started the great Indian race to cram subjects to score well during examination. The interest & aptitude of the students stifled in the system. Also, the British Administrative system was still developing during that period. So little information was available to teachers to impart knowledge & share information about the opportunity structure or merits or demerits of the Policy & procedures. Thus students generally lacked information on how to approach the subject to pursue their goals or to enhance their skills further. There is little evidence of indigenous research facilities as British were keen to push their industrial wares in India & thus were more interested to stifle Indian innovation rather than promoting it. Even with all its several flaws of the Education System prevalent today in India is that, it is an extension of the Old British Raj Education system with very little reform ushered into the same. Post Independence, we started taking decisions locally. However, our Administrators as well as most Strategic observers had little faith on our culturally diverse society to be able to stick together. So, they kept the decision making process mostly under wraps away from public gaze. Thus Education system could not benefit from observation of the decision making & its implementation process. Neither was debate on Governance, policy & procedures brought forth in public domain. While relatively more promotion was given to promote India’s indigenous Values system & highlight its Rich history & common heritage, little information was provided on how it interacts with global schemes of things, how policies and procedures are being evolved & discuss suitability of those decisions for our toiling masses. Students who pass out have little idea over the direction that they should adopt to reach their Goals, the behaviour, tendencies, requirements of organizations in their field of avocation; the policies & regulatory structures as well as global & competitive structures shaping the industry; challenges, incentives & motivation of various players in the industry etc. From the British period, students went abroad (generally to UK, which was the centre of the World, then) to acquire (higher) Education since that provided them with greater sense of liberation by helping them to see ready reference points & policy making in action. The glimpses of this Education bias can be seen in India’s Freedom struggle itself where those educated in Britain dominated the scene & commanded India post liberation, while those who educated in India are just small blips in the History of our Freedom struggle. The bias in favour of foreign education continues till date even as “Young India” cries for Sweeping reforms to overhaul of the Education system. However, to be fair to British Education system, it did help inculcate the sense of Rule of Law, Equality before Law, Freedom of Speech, Freedom to pursue one’s religion & Belief system etc. among Indians. Engineers trained by the system helped build several Bridges, Dams, Roads, Railways & Maritime transportation. It helped create a single administrative unit for the whole of India, which constituted of several Princely states, and our ‘Babus’, which are product of the same Education system are still able to hold the country together in
more or less the same way, British handed it over to them. The thriving Electoral Democracy, Free Press, Independent Judiciary, a Professional Army among several institutions acclaimed for their excellence are all managed by products of the same Education System. Guess, it shall be wiser to instead dwell of the future course for Education System in India; to focus on strategies to groom intellect for the future rather than debate the past.
Education in Modern India Education in Independent India During the post independence period, the First Education Commission was constituted in 1948 on university education. The Commission was chaired by Dr S Radhakrishnan and also known as the Radhakrishnan Commission. This Commission stressed on autonomous status of universities. The Commission pointed out ‘democracy depends for its very life on high standard of general, vocational and professional education’. The dissemination of learning, incessant search for new knowledge, unceasing effort to plumb the meaning of life provision for professional education to satisfy occupational needs of our society are the vital tasks of higher education”. As an outcome of these recommendations, the University Grants Commission was established in 1956 (Recommendation for setting UGC was received in 1942 as well). In July 1964 Second Education Commission known as the Kothari Commission was appointed to establish well designed, balanced, integrated and adequate system of national education capable of making the powerful contribution to national life. The Commission emphasized on
expansion of higher education, enhancing quality of higher education and research; and use of dynamic techniques for management and organization. In 1968, the National Policy on Education was adopted based on the recommendations of the Kothari Commission, which led to the considerable expansion of education facilities all over the country. In rural habitations, schooling facilities were recommended to be developed within a radius of one kilometre but these did not get translated into detailed structure of implementation. Allocation of responsibility for various subjects to different tier of government is ultimately laid down in the Constitution. From 1950, when the Constitution came into force, till 1976, Education was essentially a State subject, with role of Central Government being limited to Running Central Universities , Central institutions of training and research, and institutions of national importance, and Coordination and determination of standards in institutions for higher, scientific and technical education and research. The Constitution (42nd Amendment) Act, 1976, shifted Education, in general, from the “State List” to the “Concurrent List”, thus giving both Central and State Governments jurisdiction over it, concurrently. The concept of concurrency was fleshed out in para 3.13 (“A Meaningful Partnership”) of the National Policy on Education, 1986, which reads as follows:3.13 The Constitutional Amendment of 1976, which includes Education in the Concurrent List, was a far-reaching step whose implications--substantive, financial and administrative-require a new sharing of responsibility between the Union Government and the States in respect of this vital area of national life. While the role and responsibility of the States in regard to education will remain essentially unchanged, the Union Government would accept a larger responsibility to reinforce the national and integrative character of education, to maintain quality and standards (including those of the teaching profession at all levels), to study and monitor the educational requirements of the country as a whole in regard to manpower for development, to cater to the needs of research and advanced study, to look after the international aspects of education, culture and Human Resource Development and, in general, to promote excellence at all levels of the educational pyramid throughout the country. Concurrency signifies a partnership, which is at once meaningful and challenging; the National Policy will be oriented towards giving effect to it in letter and spirit. By the 72nd and 73rd Amendments to the Constitution, bodies of local self-government – Panchayati Raj bodies for rural and Municipal bodies for urban areas, respectively – were accorded Constitutional status, in 1993. Assignment of functions to these bodies is to be determined by laws enacted by individual State legislatures. However, the Eleventh and Twelfth Schedules of the Constitution provide illustrative lists of items which may, by law, be devolved on these local bodies. The Eleventh Schedule lists Education up to the Secondary level, Vocational Education, and Adult and Non-Formal Education, among others, for devolution to Panchayati Raj bodies. Let’s discuss governing system for Education in India. The Constitution The Constitution of India is the ultimate document which guides State policy in all sectors, including Education. Details of provisions contained in the Constitution, which have a
bearing on Education, have been listed on this website under the caption “Constitutional Provisions”. Their more important features are: Provision of free and compulsory education to all children upto the age of fourteen years Education, in general, is the concurrent responsibility of the Union and the States. However, (a) coordination and determination of standards in higher and technical education, and (b) institutions declared by Parliament by law to be institutions of national importance, are the responsibility of the Union . Local authorities (Panchayats and Municipalities) are to be assigned a suitable role in education (especially School, Adult and Non-Formal Education) through individual State legislations. State Governments and Local Authorities are expected to provide facilities for instruction in the mother tongue at the primary stage of education Important Legislations Next to the Constitution, State Policy is articulated through legislations. Some of the important Central legislations having a bearing on the subjects allotted to the Department of Higher Education are: The University Grants Commission Act, 1956 The All India Council for Technical Education Act, 1987 The National Council for Minority Educational Institutions Act, 2004 The Copyright Act, 1957 The Apprentices Act, 1961 National Policies on Education There have so far been mainly two comprehensive statements of the National Policy on Education, viz. those of 1968 and 1986. The former contained decisions of the Central Government on the recommendations of the National Commission on Education, 1964-66. The latter was a result of the renewed priority assigned to Education by the government of the Late Shri Rajiv Gandhi, who was Prime Minister during 1984-89. The 1986 policy was reviewed by a Committee constituted in 1990 under the chairmanship of Acharya Ramamurti. On the basis of the recommendations of this Committee, certain provisions of the 1986 policy were modified in 1992. Thus, in all, the following three comprehensive national policy statements exist on Education: National Policy on Education, 1968 National Policy on Education, 1986 National Policy on Education, 1986, as modified in 1992
In keeping with its billion-plus population and high proportion of the young, India has a large formal Education System. Its target group (children and young persons in the 6-24 years age group) numbered around 410 million in 2005, or about 38% of the country's population. With this background of different Commissions and National Policies, it would be worth glancing through post independence progress in expansion of education and its quality in the country. Also it would be worth identifying the gaps so that remedies could be worked out for further improvement Following are some indicators of the size of India's Education System (figures pertain to 2005-06, unless otherwise stated): Target Population (6-24 years age group) (Estimate for 2005) 410 million
Total Enrolments in all Educational Institutions (School to University) Number of Educational Institutions Schools Colleges (2005-06) Universities (as on 31.03.07)
1.29 million 20,769 350 (236 Universities + 101 Deemed Universities +13 Institutions of National Importance) 6.5 million
Number of Teachers
(The above figures of enrolment, etc. do not include the non-formal system which aims to educate adult illiterates, above the age of 15 years.)
Education in Post-Independence India: Some Milestones
14Written by: Amit Bhushan & Sweta Nigam Amit Bhushan is a Corporate Banking professional at Delhi Sweta Nigam is a Teacher of Science/Chemistry at Delhi Suggestion /Feedback are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com Note: All views are personal.
1947 1948-49 1950
India achieves Independence University Education Commission constituted; gives Report India becomes a Republic. Free and compulsory education enshrined as one of the Directive Principles of State Policy in the new Constitution
Decennial Census yields a Literacy Rate (5+) of 18.3% (overall), 8.9% (female)
First Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) established at Kharagpur
Secondary Education Commission constituted; gives Report
University Grants Commission (UGC) established by Act of Parliament
Indian Institute of Technology (Kharagpur) Act passed by Parliament
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru delivers the first convocation address at the first IIT (Kharagpur)
1958 1959 1961
Second IIT established at Mumbai Third and Fourth IITs established at Kanpur and Chennai, respectively
NCERT established Institutes of Technology Act passed by Parliament to provide a common legal framework for all IITs
First two Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) set up at Ahmedabad and Kolkata
1963 1964-66 1968 1963 1975
Fifth IIT established at Delhi Education Commission constituted; gives Report First National Policy on Education (NPE) adopted, in the light of the recommendations of the Education Commission Third IIM established at Banglore Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme launched to provide for holistic development of children up to the age of six
years 1976 1984 1985 1986 1987-88 Constitution amended to change “Education” from being a “State” subject to a “Concurrent” one Fourth IIM established at Lucknow Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) established by an Act of Parliament New National Policy on Education (NPE) adopted
Many large centrally-assisted schemes like “Operation Blackboard”, “Educational Technology”, “Vocationalisation of Secondary Education”, etc., launched in pursuance of NPE, 1986
All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) vested with statutory status by an Act of Parliament
National Literacy Mission launched
NPE, 1986, revised, based on a review by the Acharya Ramamurti Committee
National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE) vested with statutory status by an Act of Parliament
District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) launched to universalize primary education in selected districts
National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) established by UGC (with headquarters at Bangalore ) to assess and accredit institutions of higher education
National Board of Accreditation (NAB) established by AICTE to periodically evaluate technical institutions and programmes
Sixth IIT established at Guwahati
Centrally-assisted Mid-Day Meal scheme launched in government and semi-government primary schools all over the country, with central assistance by way of free foodgrains
Fifth IIM established at Kozhikode Sixth IIM established at Indore
Decennial Census yields Literacy rate (7+) of 65.4% (overall), 53.7% (female) Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) launched to universalize elementary education of good quality all over the country University of Roorkee converted into (the seventh) IIT
Constitution amended to make Free and Compulsory Education, a Fundamental Right (yet to be brought into force) 17 Regional Colleges of Engineering converted into National Institutes of Technology, fully funded by the Central Government
Education Cess levied for raising additional finance needed to fulfill Government’s commitment to universalize quality basic education
Mid-Day Meal scheme revised to provide central assistance to meet cooking cost as well
2005 2006 2007
• EDUSAT, a satellite dedicated to education, launched National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions established by Act of Parliament Two Indian Institutes of Science Education & Research (IISERs) established at Kolkata and Pune, respectively • •
Seventh Indian Institute of Management established at Shillong One Indian Institute of Science Education & Research (IISER) established at Mohali
The National Institutes of Technology (NITs) brought under a common statutory framework by establishing NIT Act.
Rashtriya Sanskrit Parishad Constituted
The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Admission) Ac Notified.
Important Achievements Quantitative Expansion The following comparative figures show the remarkable growth of Indian Education since India became a republic in 1950: S. No Item Figure in 1950-51 Figure in 200506 (Unless
Masters Program Polytechnic 3 Yr. Diploma Senior Secondary Doctoral Program Prof. Course Graduate Engg./Med. University Graduate
Technician Scientists /Research Scholars
otherwise stated) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Literacy Rate Female Literacy Rate Schools General Colleges Professional Colleges Universities 18.3% 8.9% 0.23 million 370 208 27 32.1% 0.38 1.5% 64.8% (2001) 53.7% 1.28 million 11698 7797 350 94.85% 0.92 3.46%
Gross Enrolment Ratio in Elementary Education 8 Gender Parity Index at Elementary level 9 Public Expenditure on Education as % of GDP * Source of above information: nicnet.
Structure of Education System in India Structure of Formal Education System in India on its surface is almost congruent to Education system in most other developed & developing countries in the World. A simplistic diagram of the model is shared below.
ITI 1-2 Yr. Craftsmen DGET Certificate Apprenticeship 2-4 Yr. CertificateSkilled Craftsmen Elementary Workers with-out any specific skills Vocational Secondary Secondary
The vision of any educational system is to make youth self reliant, self-confident to achieve the goals. Modern education in India is often criticized for being based on rote learning (The same being extension of the system as nurtured by the British) & thus fails to meet this goal. Emphasis is laid on passing examinations with high percentage. Very few institutes give importance to nurturing interests & help in identifying aptitude of the students. The ability to develop those aptitudes to bankable & marketable skills is rudimentary, at best. Failure to focus on Personality development and creativity & research aptitude among students is appalling. Negligible guidance & counselling is provided to help student walk through the maze of education & training institute to reach his/her destination of opportunity or fixing a stable approach in profession. The measurements of success of education system are: 1. Students who pass out have advanced skills (which are marketable & bankable) and have the spirit to innovate to solve requirements of the society. 2. They have courage for Research, Enterprise, Organisation ability, Competitive/Sportsman like aptitude, Character and Leadership. 3. They posses Intellectual curiosity & analytical skills to observe natural, social, cultural phenomenon to deduce new & relevant information to meet/solve industry requirements. 4. They have superior understanding of Local (Municipal & state regulations), National and International regulations & standards that govern their trade/industry with understanding of how different players interact & negotiate. 5. Ability to decipher behaviour traits incentive & motivation of various players & how change in the system impacts various players. 6. Physical & Mental fitness, superior communications & negotiation skills & other requisite soft skills. 7. Overall ability of the student to make a positive impact to the society or the people around him/her. The present system is not yet fully catering to the needs of the youth due to various inherent & historical problems, political and financial constraints. In the context of globalization, educational system should make suitable changes which will enable the students to find/create their own place in future. The system is much centralized, so that the creativity of young minds is stifled. The problems in the Education system are basically the same that afflicts any other Department of Government of India. A chunk of people with vested interest, political consideration, self aggrandizement and corruption manage to push themselves into occupying important Administrative positions. This is routine because present Political masters, just like British, want to run their own agenda
and therefore need support from condescending “Babus”. The “Babus” have little interest in progressing Education but in conniving with Political Masters to forward their own Political & personal goals. To make the matter worse, several racketeers & people with enlightened Self interest, join in to profit from the manipulated system. Scope for reforms is curtailed by creating a large dependency on the system, by issuing binding and long term commitments & avoidance of public debates on issues by keeping whole affair secretive. A large army of Rent seekers (de-motivated work force) then gathers around, which in order to protect their turf/jobs habitually argue against any reforms, leading to further aggravation of problems for the public. Further problems arise as silos/independent bodies are created which start to Lord over specialised fields & navigate themselves as independent ships aloof from any developments in the surroundings/governing ministry. New government or ministers, in their endeavour for reforms end up creating new silos due to lack of intellectual merit, political & personal interests, lack of will to reforms which may involve high decibel debates with political ramifications and/or corruption (benefits that accrue from existing system). A Brief but non-exhaustive list of various organizations/silos that are core part of our Education system are discussed below for benefit of the readers to help gaze the complexity of the education system through which a child must negotiate in order to successfully qualify to enter the opportunities provided by the economy. The purpose is also to make the reader aware of the vast system so that one is able to negotiate with & through this was system in a more informative manner. School Education System The Indian education system is based upon 12 years of schooling (10+2), which includes primary and secondary education. Secondary Schools are affiliated with Central or states boards for conduct of examination. All the Indian universities and other institutions of higher education recognize the various 10+2 qualifications from different states as well as all India Boards like the CBSE. A list of prominent Boards of Education is given below: STATE Andhra Pradesh BOARDS Andhra Pradesh Board of Secondary Education, Hyderabad-500 001 Phone: 0842-237343 Andhra Pradesh Board of Intermediate Education Vidya Bhawan, Nampally, Hyderabad-500 001 Phone: 0842-551563 Assam Assam Board of Secondary Education Guwahati - 781 031 Phone: 0361-23884 Assam Higher Secondary Education Council Bamunimaidan, Guwahati - 781 021 Phone: 0361-27277
BOARDS Bihar School Examination Board Sinha Library Road, Patna 800 017 Phone: 0612-226916 Bihar Intermediate Education Council Reshmi Complex, Kidwai Pura Patna 800 001 Phone: 0612-232432
Goa Board of Secondary & Higher Secondary Education M-20, Nehru Nagar, A-210, Betim Cross Alto Betim, Goa- 403 521 Phone: 0832-217584
Gujarat Secondary Education Board Sector 10-B, Gandhi Nagar - 382 043 Phone: 02712-20538 Haryana Board of Education Hansi Road, Bhiwani - 125021 Phone: 01644-43525, Fax: 01644-41611
Himanchal Himachal Pradesh Board of School Eduction Gayana Lok Parisar, Civil Lines, Dharamsala-176216. Pradesh Distt. Kangra Phone: 01892-22773 Jammu & Kashmir J&K State Board of School Education Rehari Colony, Jammu- 180 005 Lalmandi, Srinagar 190 005 Phone: 0191-546604(Jammu), 0194-32378(Srinagar) Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board 6th Cross, Malleswaram, Bangalore 560 003 Phone: 080 – 3343391 Karnataka Board of the Pre-University Education Technical Education Building, Palace Road, Bangalore560 001 Phone: # 91-80 2265141 Kerala Kerala Board of Public Examinations Pareeksha Bhawan, Poojappura Thiruvannanthapuram-695 012 Phone: 0471-341171
Maharashtra Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher
BOARDS Secondary Education Shivajinagar, Pune 411 010 Phone: 0212 326285, Fax: 0212 326466
Madhya Pradesh Board of Secondary Education Bhopal 462 011 Phone: 0755 551166, Fax: 0755 551499 Manipur Board of Secondary Education Imphal - 795 001 Phone: 03852-220943 Manipur Council of Higher Secondary Education D.M. College Campus, Imphal - 795 001 Phone: 03852-224617
Meghalaya Board of School Education West Garo Hills Tura, Meghalaya-794 101 Phone: 03651-474 Mizoram Board of School Education Chaltlang, Post Box 7, Aizawl-796 012 Phone: 03832 2704 Nagaland Board of School Education Post Box, 98, Kohima 767 001 Phone: 03866-22520, Fax: 03866-22975 Orissa Board of Secondary Education Bajrakabati Road, Cuttack 753 001 Phone: 0671-6163302 Orissa Council of Higher Secondary Education Kadargouri Road, Bhubaneshwar - 751 002 Phone: 0674-51112
Punjab School Education Board SAS Nagar (Ropar), Mohali 160 055 Phone: 0172-570524 Rajasthan Board of Secondary Education Ajmer 305 001 Phone: 0145 422497, Fax: 0145 52394 Tamil Nadu Board of Secondary Education Department of Govt. Examinations College Road, Madras 600 006 Phone: 044 8272088, Fax: 044 8278286 Tamil Nadu Board of Higher Secondary Education
BOARDS DPI Compound, College Road Madras-600 006 Phone: 044 8278796
Tripura Board of Secondary Education Jawaharlal Nehru Complex (Gurkha Basti (P.O) Kunjaban, Agartala, Tripura West 799 006 Phone: 0381-224818 UP Board of High School & Intermediate Education Allahabad - 211 001 Phone: 0532 602367 (Allahabad), 0532 226136 (Lucknow) West Bengal Board of Secondary Education 77/2, Park Street, Calcutta 700 016 Phone: 033-298594 West Bengal Board of Higher Secondary Education Bikash Bhawan, North & East Block (2nd Floor) Salt Lake, Calcutta 700 091 Phone: 033-379661
Central Board of Secondary Education 2, Community Centre, Shiksha Kendra Preet Vihar, Delhi- 110 092 Phone: 011-2215827, Fax: 011-2215826 Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations Pragati House, 47/48, Nehru Place New Delhi - 110 019 Phone: 011-6413820, Fax: 011-621205 National Open School B-13B, Kailash Colony, New Delhi-110 048 Phone: 011-6481455, Fax: 011-6211452
Though Class XIIth is the entry-level qualification for pursuing higher education in any field, passing it in itself does not guarantee admission to a particular course. Like for example, some courses specify pre-requisite subjects that the student must have at the qualifying exam (class XIIth); for professional courses other than the pre-requisite subjects a student may also have to sit for an entrance test e.g. IIT-JEE, CPMT etc. Well known colleges specify cut-off marks (i.e. marks or grade obtained in a particular subject or subjects(s) in class XIIth) for admission in various courses, which may be as high as 85-90% for admission
in say B.Sc Hons. (Physics). The cut-off marks or overall entry score can vary between courses in the same university/college, between similar courses in different universities/ colleges and from year to year in the same course. Some courses and some Universities/ institutions/colleges are in greater demand than others and therefore gaining entry into them is correspondingly tougher.
National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT): In the area of school education the Government of India has set up an apex resource organization ‘The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)’ which assists and advises the Central and State Governments on academic matters related to school education. The NCERT provides academic and technical support for improvement of school education through its various constituents like the National Institute of Education (NIE), Central Institute of Educational Technology (CIET) and a number of Regional Institutes of Education (RIE) located at different cities. College/Graduate Education System The higher education system is principally divided into three levels namely: Undergraduate or Bachelor’s Level (e.g. B.Sc., B.A., B.E., M.B.B.S., L.L.B., etc.) Postgraduate or Master’s Level (e.g. M.Sc., M.A., M.Tech., M.S., LL.M., etc.) Doctoral (Ph.D.) Bachelor’s degrees in science, arts and commerce take three years of study but in vocational subjects like pharmacy, dentistry, architecture, medicine and technology the duration may vary between four to five and a half years. Many universities and colleges offer `honors’ courses at graduation level, which may not be longer in duration but indicate greater depth in study. Diploma courses are also available at the undergraduate level and the duration of their study may vary from 1 to 3 years. Master’s degree is normally of two-year duration. It could either be course or research based. Admission to post graduate programs in engineering and technology is done on the basis of GATE. Those interested in pursuing further studies may either directly register themselves for PhD or do a pre-doctoral program –Master of Philosophy (M.Phil) which is either completely research based or may also include some course work. It takes lesser time to complete PhD for those doing it after M.Phil. Postgraduate level diploma courses are also available which are generally of one-year duration. The higher education system, comprising of various universities, colleges, professional institutes etc caters to around 7 million students. Though State
Governments are responsible for establishment of State Universities and running them, Government of India is primarily responsible for framing major policies relating to higher education in the country. University Grants Commission (UGC): It is Government of India entity is responsible for coordination, determination and maintenance of standards, and release of central grants to the universities. Apart from this, Government of India has also established sixteen central universities in the country, which are totally funded by the UGC. Taking advantage of the great demand for higher education especially for professional courses, many dubious institutes have also come up. Even otherwise, sometimes the syllabus of a particular course offered by an institute may be outdated and not up to the mark. The government on its part has created various statutory bodies to ensure that the education organizations that operate within their framework provide qualifications, which are quality assured and formally recognized by institutions, employers and government authorities. These statutory bodies are also responsible for providing grants and various awards. There are 12 such bodies dealing with higher education in various fields: The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE): It was established by an Act of Parliament to develop, promote and co-ordinate technical education in the country. Technical Education broadly covers the field of engineering & technology, architecture & town planning, management, pharmacy and applied arts & crafts. The council grants approval for starting new technical institutions and introduction of new programs in consultation with the agencies concerned. Recently it has also created a separate body-National Body of Accreditation (NBA) that gives accreditation to institutions and grades the courses offered by them. Distance Education Council (DEC): It is the apex body responsible for promotion and maintenance of standards of open and distance education in India. There are ten open universities in India at present and Indira Gandhi National University (IGNOU) is the only National Open University, the remaining nine are a State Open Universities (SOUs). However there are 62 university level traditional institutions, which also impart education through correspondence/distance mode. Indian Council for Agriculture Research (ICAR): It keeps the information and provides consultancy on agriculture, horticulture, resource management, animal sciences, agricultural engineering, fisheries, agricultural extension, agricultural education, home science and agricultural communication. It has the mandates to co-ordinate agricultural research and development programmes. Bar Council of India (BCI): It is formed under Advocates Act, 1961. It promotes legal education and lay
down the standards of professional education and ethics for advocates. The National Council For Teacher Education (NCTE): It was established by an Act of Parliament and is responsible for planned and coordinated development for teacher education system throughout the country. The Council regulates and maintains norms and standards in teacher education system and gives recognition to institutions offering courses or training in teacher education. Rehabilitation Council Of India (RCI): Regulates the training policies and programmes in the field of rehabilitation and standardizes training courses for paramedics engaged in rehabilitation of people with disabilities Like MCI it also establishes reciprocity with foreign universities/institutes in the matter of mutual recognition of qualifications awarded in the field of rehabilitation. It also maintains Central Rehabilitation Register of persons possessing the recognized rehabilitation qualification. Medical Council of India (MCI): was established as a statutory body with the aim of maintaining uniform standards of medical education in the country at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. It is mandatory for a doctor to register himself with the Council after gathering necessary medical qualifications. Another important function of the Council is to establish reciprocity with foreign countries in the matter of mutual recognition of medical qualifications. The Council also maintains Indian Medical Register containing information about all medical practitioners in the county. Pharmacy Council of India (PCI): It prescribes, regulates and maintains minimum educational standards for the training of pharmacists. It prescribes the syllabus, norms, etc., for the institutions and regulations for diploma course in pharmacy. It registers Pharmacists. Indian Nursing Council (INC): It is responsible for regulation and maintenance of a uniform standard of training for Nurses, Midwives, Auxilliary Nurse-Midwives and Health Visitors. It prescribes the syllabus and regulations for various nursing courses. It inspects Nursing Schools and Examination Centres to maintain uniformity and the requisite standard of Nursing Education. Dental Council of India (DCI): Its main objective is to regulate Dental Education, Dental Profession and Dental ethics in the country. It recommends to the Government of India to accord permission to start a Dental College, start higher course and increase of seats. Central Council of Homoeopathy (CCH): is a statutory body responsible for laying down the minimum standards of education in Homoeopathy and recognizing or derecognizing medical qualification. It advises Central Government in matters of connected with the
study and practice of Homeopathy. The Council also maintains a Central Register of Homoeopathy containing details of Homoeopath practitioners. Central Council Of Indian Medicine (CCIM): It is responsible for laying down and maintaining uniform standards of education in the fields of Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani and regulating practice in these systems. The Council prescribes the curriculum and syllabus for under-graduate & post-graduate education in these systems and amends them from time to time as per requirements. It also advises the Central Government in matters relating to recognition of medical qualifications of Indian Medicine. The Council also maintains a Central Register of Indian Medicine containing details of practitioners of these systems. Besides, the above, Technical & Vocational programs are offered by several ministries through a number of Public & Private organizations affiliated with them. A non-exhaustive list for the same is also shared. Sl. No . Ministry/ Department Schemes/ Programmes/Institutions having provision for Vocational Education and Training programme Training in Agricultural Extension , Training in use of Agricultural Implements and machinery, Soil Conservation Training Centre, LFQC&TI, NPPTI, Cooperative Education & Training. Under the University stream, various under-graduate, post graduate and Ph.D. courses are offered (DARE) Grants are provided to NGOs for setting up of Food Processing & Training Centres (FPTCs) Institutions like Central Food Technology Research Institute, Paddy Processing Research Centre, PHTC, Council of Entrepreneurial Development Programme (EDP) are also running training courses. Basic Training of multipurpose health worker (Female & Male) • ANM/MPW(F) Training Centres • HFWTC & Basic Target Group
M/o Agriculture (i) Department of Agriculture Research & Education (ii) Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries M/o Food Processing Industries
Person engaged in Agricultural institutions and support services, member of cooperatives and Farmers. Students with Qualifications as usual under University stream of education
Persons living in rural areas with preference being given to women, SC, ST and other weaker sections of society Mainly persons in Food Processing Industry
M/o Health & Family Welfare
Educated youth with minimum 10th pass Persons working in Health & Family Welfare Programme
M/o Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises
MPWA(M) Schools • Promotional training of Female Health Assistant in 42 training centres. Training is also provided by Safdarjung Hospital, St. John Ambulance. NTCP, NPCB, NMHP, NACP, INC, CBHI, CLTRI, PWTRC, ECH etc. Vocationalization of Secondary Education Polytechnics + Institutions for diploma in pharmacy, hotel management, architecture Community Polytechnic Jan Shikshan Sansthan (Vocational Training Centres run by NGOs)
Student having passed 10th class 10th pass Poorer section of society in both rural and urban areas
Support for Distance Education & Web Based Learning (NPTEL) NIOS – Distance Vocational Educatin Programmes (Practical Training through Accredited Vocational Institutes (AVIs) Apprenticeship Training for students of +2 Vocational stream National Programme on Earthquake Engineering
Disadvantaged groups of adults. Priority to adult neo-literates/ semi literates, SC and ST, women/girls, oppressed, migrants, slum/ pavement dwellers and working children Enginnering and physical sciences under-graduate/ post-graduate, all teachers/ faculties in Science and Engineering field 5th, 7th and 8th and 10th pass. Students passing out of +2 Vocational Stream Recognized engineering colleges/ polytechnics and schools of architecture having related academic degree of diploma programme Students or working persons with 10+2 pass It conducts courses in the filed of Electronics, Telecommunications, IT, Process Control &
D/o Information Technology
DOEACC – ‘O’ level CEDTI
Instrumentation 9 M/o Labour (DGET) Craftsmen Training Scheme (CTS) Apprenticeship Training Scheme (ATS) Craft Instructor Training Scheme (CITS) Advanced Vocational Training Scheme and Hi-tech Training Schemes Supervisory Training Women Training Institutes Central Staff Trailing and Research Institute Model Training Institutes and Model Industrial Training Institutes National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD) Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY) 8th, 10th and 12th pass 8th, 10th and 12th pass or National Trade Certificate (from NCVT) Holder Instructors of ITIs Industrial Workers/ Technicians Supervisors from Industry Women (School leavers, Instructors and others) Training Executives and Principals School leavers with 8th, 10th and 12th pass. Practicing Manager in rural development Focus is on the vulnerable groups among the rural poor. SC/STs should account for a minimum of 50%, women for 20% and disabled for 3% of the total swarozgaris during a year. Workers Education, unemployed youth, Entrepreneurs
M/o Labour (DGET)
M/o Rural Development
M/o MSME (Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO)
Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment
Entrepreneurship Development Programme. Skill Development Programme (SDP). Management Development Programme.
National Institute of Mentally Handicapped. National Institute for the Orthopedically Handicapped. Institute for Physically Handicapped. National Institute for the Hearing Handicapped, National Handicapped Finance and Development Corporation, National Scheme of Liberation and Rehabilitation of Scavengers and their Dependents. National Scheduled Castes and Scheduled tribes Finance and Development Corporation.
Disadvantaged and marginalized sections of the society viz., SC, Minorities, B.C.. Persons with disabilities. Aged Persons. Street children and victims of Drug Abuse etc. Workers in Garment Industry
D/o Tourism M/o Tribal Affairs
M/o Urban Development & Poverty Alleviation HUDCO & others in Construction sector
Rehabilitation Council of India. Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC) Decentralized Training Programme. Weavers’ Services Centres, Cooperative Training. Power loom Centres. Indian Jute Industries Research Association, Central Wool Development Board, Central Silk Board. Training Centres for Handicrafts. North-eastern Handicrafts and Handlooms Development Corporation. Food Craft Institutes under State Governments. Vocational training Centres (VTC) in Tribal Areas.(100% central assistance is given to State/UT/NGOs ) Urban Self Employment Programme under Swarna Jayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana Building Centres (HUDCO) Company run schools (NBCC, HCC, L&T, ECC etc.) & association etc. Construction Industry Development Council (CIDC) & Others Support to Training and Employment Programme for Women (STEP) Swalamban (previously NORAD)
Skill upgradation of Workers in textile Industry.
10th Pass Unemployed Tribal Youth (Each person is given training in two trades) Urban Unemployed or underemployed poor below poverty line Persons engaged in Construction Industry Worker & Supervisor having qualifications of Vth to XIIth Standard. To provide updated skills and new knowledge to poor and assetless women traditional sectors To train poor women mostly in non-traditional trades. Housewives and Adolescent girls with a view to promote preservation and consumption of fruits and vegetables which provide much needed micronutrients, as well as to provided necessary skills which could be useful for income generation purposes. To train women in marketable trades and also to upgrade their skills for getting remunerative employment opportunities. To organize women into effective Self Help Groups.
D/o Women & Child Development
D/o Women & Child Development
Training in Home scale preservation of fruits and vegetables (by Community Food and Nutrition Extension Units (CFNEUs)
D/o Women & Child Development
Central Social Welfare Board (programmes are organized by voluntary organizations) Women Empowerment Programme in collaboration with IGNOU (Training programme on “Empowering women through SHG”)
D/o Women & Child Development
Kishori Shakit Yojana Other programmes like UDISHA, Training of Anganwadi Workers, NIPCCB, Rashtriya Mahila Kosh etc.
To train and equip adolescent girls to improve home based and vocational skills
The above list seems humungous, but as has been pointed out repeatedly, is not exhaustive. There are several important Government departments, Industry Association, Regulatory Institution that run important centre of Education not covered yet. Mention can be made for Department of Atomic Energy which runs several courses, Department of Statistics which runs Indian Statistical Institute, Department of Commerce which runs The Indian Institute of Foreign Trade; Among Industry Association Banking & insurance industry run National Institute of Bank Management, Institute of Development Banking & Research, Institute of Actuaries; Regulatory Institutions like Deptt. Of Civil Aviation that run courses for Pilots & Aeronautical Engineers, Railways & Shipping Deptts. which run several courses for Logistics Management, Rail Engineering & Marine Technologists etc. The list of courses can expand further “Research” is done. One of the problems in our Education system is how to mate the “Skill Development courses” with pupils who have the ‘Right aptitude” for them. The students while selecting course, must make informed choices. For which they should understand the system, have information of these opportunity & make decisions as per their aptitude. However, in practice, neither student his parent or teachers are in position to have an exhaustive list of choice of courses, have fleeting idea about the curriculum of the courses, little information of the bankability of the quality of educational institute and almost no idea about the opportunity structure that might be present after completion of the course. To add further to the confusion, there are institutes offering “Foreign Education”, Testing & Certification programs. These institutes are licensed training partners of popular Foreign Institutes & Industrial Training who offer coaching at their ‘Centres’ while Test is via Online Test or sometimes at a Location within India and frequently tests are required to be taken abroad. Just quite frequently, the programs are also distance learning program of those institutes. Frequently, a wanna be student is lost about the intellectual merit as well as utility of passing the program as proper counseling is not available. The students get absorbed into taking the course basis advertisement by the ‘centre’ and word of mouth campaign that is initiated by the institute. The present “Education system’ often criticized as “Examination system”, is not a true test of child’s capacity. Creativity and independent thinking is not encouraged. The system lacks “capacity” to reach all and suffers from a vast deficit in terms of “quality” of its output. Traditionally, Indian elite have harboured “Bramhanical” mindset with disdain for physical work and marked preference for “Brain/Mind” work. Such preference is also noted while selecting jobs where premium is given to “Desk work” over working on “Shop floor”. This has led to a bias for attainment of “Professional” status and thus a preference for Graduate studies irrespective of “Quality of output”, Low bankability of institutions, Lack of potential & intellectual merit of the student and almost no benefit in terms of attaining marketable skills.
Almost 60-65% of the students that walk through normal K-12 (Kindergarten to 12 standard) followed by Graduation with very small number opting for vocational skills & other tertiary options. In more advanced countries like the United States, more people opt for Vocational skills imparting “Associate Degrees & diploma” than intellectually challenging “Graduate” course. In India, partly due to attitude, partly lack of information and lastly because of poor course planning & level of skill development in vocational courses, students & their parents have not shown much interest. Industry on its part has been hiring graduates (who otherwise have little marketable skills, especially those which have passed from not so reputed colleges) in the hidden mis-belief that it helps in underlining their “Professionally Managed” status and then spending a part of its fortune in training them for output. Why even the industry has been passive to Vocational courses raises a big question mark on the ability of Vocational Training system in India.
Development in Education Sector, 2008 onwards
Coordinated Action on skill development as proposed by Planning Commission was approved by the Cabinet on 15th May, 2008. The Coordinated Action is the major initiative for achieving 11th Plan objective of inclusive growth and development through coordination and harmonization of skill development initiatives of different players. The action aims at creation of a pool of skilled manpower in numbers with adequate skills that meets the employment requirement across various sectors of the national economy. The approved Coordinated Action on Skill Development envisages setting up of institutional structure involving PM’s Council on Skill Development for policy direction to be supported by National Skill Development Coordination Board (NSDCB) chaired by Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission and National Skill Development Corporation under Ministry of Finance. The institutional structure has been put in place. PM’s Council on National Skill Development has Union Ministers of key Ministries of Finance, HRD, MSME, Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Rural Development, Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Labour, Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Chairperson, National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council, Chairperson of National Skill Development Corporation and six experts in the area of skill development. The main functions of the Council are:-
(i) To lay down overall broad Policy objectives, financing and governance models
and strategies relating to skill Development. (ii) To review the progress of schemes, and guide on midcourse corrections, additions and closure of parts or whole of any particular programme / scheme, (iii) Coordinate Public Sector/Private Sector Initiatives in a framework of a collaborative action.
The Council has set a target of creating 500 million skilled people by 2022 with emphasis on inclusivity so as to deal with divides of gender, rural / urban, organized / unorganized, employment and traditional / contemporary work place. It has laid down the core governing principles and operating strategies for skill development. Some of the key governance principles for skill development strategy include designing of programmes under which the learner can pay the skill provider directly, skills are fungible and bankable, and individuals are enabled to convert their knowledge and skills through adequate testing and certification into higher diplomas and degrees. The emphasis is on promoting multiple models of delivery that can respond to differing situations in various States and to utilize existing available infrastructure of educational institutions for skill development after school hours without affecting formal education. The State Governments are encouraged to set up the State-level coordination body for skill development.
National Skill Development Coordination Board The NSDCB is entrusted with the coordination and harmonization of the Governments’ initiatives for skill development spread across the seventeen Central Ministries and State Governments with the initiatives of the National Skill Development Corporation. It has twelve members which includes Secretaries of Central Ministries of Labour & Employment, Rural Development, Finance, Higher Education; Chief Secretaries of Four States by rotation, for a period of two years; three Distinguished Academicians / Subject Area Specialists; and Chairperson / Chief Executive Officer of the National Skill Development Corporation besides Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission as Chairman and Secretary, Planning Commission as the Member Secretary of the Board. The main functions of the Board include: (i) Enumerating strategies to implement the decisions of the Prime Minister’s National Council on Skill Development (ii) To develop suitable operational guidelines and instructions to achieve the objectives of skill development requirement of the economy. (iii) Initiating solutions and strategies to address the problems of regional
imbalance in skill development infrastructure; socio-economic, rural-urban and gender divide; quality teachers; ensuring effective utilization of investment in terms of money and infrastructure; integrating varying existing regulatory institutions; involving private sector to develop skills for wage/self employment and Promoting apprenticeship / on-the-job training for creation of skilled personnel to address both unemployability and unemployment problems. (iii) Encouraging the State governments to put in place similar institutional structures. (iv) Establishment of National Skill Inventory and National Database for Skill Deficiency Mapping on National Web Portal to facilitate exchange of information between prospective employers and job seekers . (v) Coordinating and facilitating the repositioning of Employment Exchanges as Outreach points for storing and providing information on employment and skill development (vi) Coordinate the establishment of a “Credible accreditation system” and a “guidance framework” for all accrediting agencies of different Ministries and Private Players (vii) Monitoring, evaluating and analyzing the outcomes of the various schemes and programmes and apprising the Apex Council.
The Board has constituted five Sub-Committees to look into various aspects of the skill development viz. Curriculum revision; Remodeling Apprenticeship Training; Evolving Vision on the Status of Vocational Education and Training in Educational System; Institutional Mechanism for Skill Mapping and Skill Inventory on Real Time Basis and Improvement in Accreditation and Certification System.
The National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), a non-profit Company under Section 25 of the Companies Act, has been set up under the Ministry of Finance. It has a equity base of Rs 10 crore of which 49% is contributed by the Govt and 51 % by the private sector. The Corporation has two tier structure viz a 15 Member Board and a National Skill Development Fund (NSDF) as a 100% government owned Trust to facilitate its mandate of coordinating and stimulating private sector initiative in the area of skill development with enhanced flexibility and effectiveness. The 15 members of the Board include six government nominees, one of whom is the Chairman (a private person) of the Corporation and 9 are private members including Chief Executive Officer. The NSDF, operating arm of the NSDC, is created with corpus with Rs. 995.10 crore as Government owned Trust to receive financial contributions from donors, private entities, government (both Central and State), statutory bodies, financial institutions etc. The NSDC and NSDF would enter into an Investment Management Agreement whereby NSDF would provide funds to NSDC for furtherance of the objective of skill
development in accordance with the approved work and financial plan. The NSDC would charge a management fee from NSDF for managing its resources. The beneficiaries of the Trust are the youth of India which require skill development and vocational training. Its main functions are as follows: (i) It will make periodic as well as an annual report of its plans and activities and put them in the public domain. (ii) Establishing a Trainee Placement and Tracking System for effective evaluation and future policy planning. (iii) Establish credible independent Certification systems for both V.E. and V.T. with the scope for permitting vertical and horizontal mobility within and between V.E. and V.T. . NATIONAL SKILL COUNCIL: VISION, STRATEGY AND CORE PRINCIPLES 1. VISION (a) Massive Ambition: Our aspirations must exceed our current resources. Our vision should create 500 million skilled people by 2022. (b) High Inclusivity : We must design the skill system for inclusivity and to deal with the divides of gender, rural / urban, organized / unorganized employment, and traditional /contemporary work place. (c) Dynamic and Self-healing : The system must be designed so that supply (trained candidates) adjusts dynamically to changes in demand. 2. STRATEGY (a) Folding the future in: If we start from our current position, we are likely to extrapolate. Folding the future in allows us to innovate. (b) Skills must be made Fungible : The rigid boundaries between categories of Education e.g. diplomas and degrees has created a structure of rigid “caste systems” within education. This must be transformed into a more open / flexible system that permits competent individuals to accumulate their knowledge and skills, and convert them through Testing and Certification into higher diplomas and degrees. (c) Skills must be made Bankable : We must make the process of skill acquisition bankable, especially for the poor. This will force a demand driven approach. (d) Co-created Solutions : The States and Districts within States are in various stages of development. We have to accept a very asymmetric India as a starting point. We have to work with States, civil society and community leaders. Publicprivate partnerships are only one part of the broader concept of co-creation. (e) Game-changing Delivery / Innovation : To give an example, the Planning Commission proposal conceives setting up 50,000 Skill Development Centers over the plan period. If we need to game change delivery, an alternative model could be to make available very public institution above the high school level, numbering over two lakhs in the country, after class hours for skill development by the Private Sector. Necessary regulations could be brought in by the local management authority of the particular educational institution. It would immediately make available the stock of public investment to combine with private sector capacity thereby helping the private sector to generate skills at lower costs, as it will not have to invest in buildings for skill training. (f) Multi-lingual Instruction; English as a Vocational Skill : English is a vocational skill. It substantially improves labour mobility and improves employment outcomes since English is now like Windows, an operating system
for business. Accelerated English learning classes must be included in Vocational training curriculums and attempts must be made to incentivize English instruction. 3. CORE OPERATING PRINCIPLES (a) Government Money must target Market failure; No need to crowd out or complete with private financing : Private resources are becoming available in specific industries and functions. The 19 Central Ministries and their budgets must target the massive market failure in vocational training for labour market outsiders (less skilled, less educated, people from small towns, women, women coming back from a child break, etc) mostly via funding innovations. (b) Decentralize; Encourage and Incentivize States to form Skill Missions : Most Delivery systems (ITIs, Employment Exchanges, Employment Officers, etc) are controlled by States. States must be incentivized to set up missions that do not undertake delivery but as an aggregator and aligner of skill efforts. Activities for the mission include funding public and private delivery, underwriting apprenticeships, introducing performance management systems for skill delivery, revamping Employment Exchanges, Creating an Asset Bank, Activating SCVTs, etc. (c) Do not use money for Building or Hard Assets : Very little of the massive increase in funds for skill development in the 11th Plan should be used for building or hard asset creation. The system today does not have a hardware problem but a software problem. Additionally there are many government buildings (both centre and state) that could be put into an asset bank (with no transfer of title or ownership) and used for private and public delivery. (d) Focus on Modularity, Open architecture and Short Term Courses; do not reimburse for courses more than six months : Vocational training cannot replace what should have been taught in schools. The current phase of reform (next five years) should focus on short, relevant and effective courses that get candidates into the workplace. The Ministry of Labour has evolved a framework called the Modular Employability Scheme (MES) that is more nimble and must replace all traditional NCVT curriculums. Requiring longer courses to emerge by welding together modules keeps the system dynamic and open to feedback. But the repair pipeline will run dry if the prepare pipeline is not fixed and skill efforts must be accompanied by a huge dose of education reform. (e) Separate financing from delivery; Make public money available for private and public delivery : Today government money is only available for government delivery. This lack of choice and competition (between delivery models and methods) blunts incentives to make the system effective, scalable and self-healing (real time feedback to curriculum based on demand). The principle of “let a thousand flowers bloom” in the context of business models, pedagogies, delivery technologies and methodologies must be encouraged. (f) Link financing to outcomes; overwhelming metric should be jobs : Today public and private training is financed largely on input metrics No. of courses, no. Of students, faculty etc. Unlike education, outcomes in vocational training are easy to measure binary; it either leads to a job or not. We need to move all government financing linked to placement ratios and outcomes. Subsidiary metrics could be drop out ratios and entry / exit gate assessment distance. (g) Use Candidates as financing vehicles rather than institutions; Create choice and competition : The bulk of the financing must be made available directly to candidates rather than to training institutions. This could be
structured as a scholarship, skill voucher, outcome based reimbursement, etc but candidate choice is crucial to creating competition and making the system self-healing, effective and scalable. (h) Create infrastructure for on-the-job-training; Encourage Apprenticeships : Formal training is powerful but formal apprenticeships are a powerful vehicle for skill development because of “learning while earning” and “learning by doing”. The enabling infrastructure for large numbers of formal apprentices needs to be built that includes modifications to the Apprenticeship Act, Integrating the MES scheme of DGET, equipping Employment Exchanges to offer matching etc. (i) Create Infrastructure for Information Asymmetry; Publicize Rating and Outcome Information for Training Institutions : Most candidates today are making training choices without any information around outcome metrics (largely jobs). We need to create a framework and infrastructure for information dissemination around key metrics for public and private training institutions. The framework would include a voluntary rating and participatory ranking system that would be different from current accreditation framework. (j) Infrastructure for Effective Entry / Exit gate; Effective Assessment and Credible Certification : Today both entry and exit gates for vocational training are wide open. But assessment is more important than training and an entry gate must be effective at “binning” candidates into various pools. The exit gate must serve as credible certification that would allow employers to use it as a proxy to fast track job applicants. Credible certification greatly reduces friction because of the “signaling value”. (k) Restructure Employment Exchanges to Career Centers : Employment Exchanges need to be restructured as aggregators who will channelize candidates into jobs, apprenticeships and training. They will need to be equipped with capabilities for assessment, career counseling, training registration, electronic registration, call and email handling etc. (l) Expand Formal Employment : Formal employment is not only fiscally attractive but more amenable to financing innovations, has more effective matching and a higher “corridor” effect from improved employability. This will require a review of existing state and central legislation that encourages or amplifies informal or unorganized employment. 4. APPROACH TO METRICS (a) Diversity of Skills (Number of Skills) : There is a need to identify, catalog and project the range and depth of skills e.g. Traditional, Industrial-era and PostIndustrial era skills to understand and present the vast array of skills that individuals can choose from. (b) Talent Pool (Number of Skilled): The ultimate measure is the “500 Million” we are envisioning. The idea is to track the population of, skilled, not to go down the path of estimating needs etc. (c) Employment Outcomes (No. of Jobs) : Vocational education must ensure a job for those that seek it. The conversion rate must be an anchor metrics for all spending and institutions. NATIONAL POLICY ON SKILL DEVELOPMENT A National Policy on Skill Development has been formulated by the Ministry of Labour & Employment and which has been approved by the Cabinet in its meeting held on 23rd February, 2009. The objective is to create a workforce empowered with improved skills, knowledge and internationally recognized qualifications to gain access to decent employment and ensure India’s competitiveness in the dynamic Global Labour market. It aims at increase in
productivity of workforce both in the organized and the unorganized sectors, seeking increased participation of youth, women, disabled and other disadvantaged sections and to synergize efforts of various sectors and reform the present system. The salient features of the Policy are : (a) Demand driven system guided by labour market signals thereby reducing skills mismatch. (b) Expansion of outreach using established as well as innovative approaches. (c) National Vocational Qualifications Framework which will interalia include opportunities for horizontal and vertical mobility between general and technical education, recognition and certification of competencies irrespective of mode of learning. (d) System to deliver ‘competencies’ in line with nationally and internationally recognized standards. (e) Focus on new emerging occupations. (f) Focus on pre-employment training and Life long learning (g) Equity consideration – adequate participation of women, disabled persons and disadvantaged groups including economically backward & minorities – enhancing their access to training; improving employability and increasing employment opportunities. (h) Stress on research, planning and monitoring (i) Involvement of social partners – responsibility for management and financing of the system would be shared with all stakeholders and provide greater space for Public Private Partnership. (j) Promoting excellence. (k) Use of modern training technologies including distance learning, e-learning, web based learning, etc. (l) Skill upgradation of trainers, their quality assurance, and improvement of status. While the agenda of the present dispensation seems pretty elaborate, much would depend upon implementation. If previous experience is any guide, most Government programs end up creating new silos, which create further dissonance in the system as various bodies vie for “Greater control of Resources” & maximize their own power. Frequently such power acquisition is about controlling a key decision, which means one more ‘nod’ to be sought by hapless public or entrepreneur in order to see fructification of his/her project. Such structures benefit key players, generally “Political supporter” of the government to launch their projects with support from the system while managing a “say” in the system so as to avoid adverse policies or Government action in future. It ends up creating bureaucratic hurdle than evangelizing or alleviating social ills. Also, at the ground level in the education system are three key players; 1) Teacher 2) Child 3) Parent. All of the three key players have all but very limited idea about the grand structure & design of the system. It is yet to been seen that how the system touches these three players and motivates & incentivize them to work forward to participate in creation & maintenance of the new structure. The level of empowerment & support systems to the three key players are yet to be decided & rolled out by the new policy/system while their specific roles & responsibilities are yet to be assessed. The changes in to behaviour of the regulating bodies like the board, University, Accreditation agencies are also to be envisaged to carry out the overhaul of the system. Also awaited is the scope on which the system would apply i.e .the Government bodies or silos that shall be shaken up & transformed at Central, state & Municipal levels (with Univ., Boards, Educational institutes & schools under them)
and exactly how they shall be impacted. Influence & participation of the Private “Not-for-Profit” & ‘For Profit” segment is also to be visualized. We need to ensure that whatever structure emerges, the Teacher, Child & Parent must feel liberated i.e. have proper understanding of the processes, systems and possibilities; of behaviours, tendency and Delivery expectation from making a choice; and also have freedom to make their own informed decisions to be able to ‘Ride’ or benefit from the sector.
Role of Emerging Private Sector A failed public education system, high socio-aspirational value attached to education and increasing affordability have all converged to drive demand for quality education (synonymous with private institutes). While private players have been active in the informal education space (Tutorials, Entrance Coaching, Vocational Training etc.) for a few decades, the ‘not-for-profit’ mandate has kept profit-driven corporates away from the $40bn opportunity. In the $10bn nonformal space, scalability remains an issue in most pockets. Inability to transform the businesses into a ‘process-driven’ model from ‘people-driven’, as also lumpy nature of revenues, has materially curtailed scalability in the highly fragmented and largely regional markets. While scale is attainable in a few pockets, it has been difficult for the business to scale – our stand is vindicated by the dearth of scaled-up players in the space. While India has been proactive on liberalization, Education has remained largely untouched by the reforms process so far. A ‘priority sector’ status does ensure fund flow to an extent, but the government’s agenda of ‘social inclusion’ has trapped Education Sector in a regulatory maze. Archaic rules mandate all formal educational institutes in India to be run as ‘not-for-profit’ centers under a society (registration under the Societies Registration Act 1860) or a public trust (Registration Act 1908). Any surplus funds generated in the process of running formal schools/ Higher Education Institutes have to be ploughed back into the same school/ Higher Education Institute and no dividends can be distributed. Private sector has taken initiative to ‘manage’ regulatory environment. There model is based on ‘extracting’ profits through sale of services from trusts (schools and Educational Institutes) in the form of lease rentals and management fee, while some players have taken the age-old informal structure to the next level. The nascent corporate activity in the formal education space is using a
two-level structure to circumvent the ‘not-for-profit’ diktat. While multi-layered regulations have meant that 80% of the opportunity (formal education) remains elusive to commercial activity, ‘innovative’ players like Prominent among them are NIIT, Educomp, Aptech Arena etc. are successfully using these structures to scale up. Quite a few venture capitalists & Angel investors have also joined in the private efforts, though in what appears to be an uncertain regulatory environment. Just to name a few: WestBridge Capital Partners Sequoia Capital Lightspeed Venture Partners IDFC Private Equity Manipal Education & MedicalGroup (HSBC PE Asia) Helix Investments Gaja Capital Helion Ventures SAIF Partners Manipal Education Group Aditya Birla Group KPCB, Sherpalo Ventures & Infoedge Capital18, the venture capital arm of media group Network18 Solutions Pvt. Ltd Lightspeed Venture Partners Matrix Partenrs Source: Websites While entry of private players is welcome since it spurs innovation in the segment and creates fresh incentive systems for improving productivity, leads to creation of Capacity and resulting competition helps in improvement of Quality along with decline in costs. It needs to be seen if the Private players are interested in the Full Scope offered by the sector or just have special focus i.e. Focus on marketing a new Trendier method of education usually delivered through usage of Audio-Visual media. While full sector is likely to grow to an USD 80 billion market, the ‘Trendy” segment may be just about 5-10% of this market. Since the Not-for-Profit mandate keeps away 80% of this scope away from the Private sector, private segment shall be left to cater to just about USD 1.6 billion market Of the market nearly 60-70% is likely in the Tertiary segment since the sector is already dominated by the ‘Private Not-for-Profit” sector, the rest is likely to be from Primary, Secondary & vocational sectors. If the Private sector wants to be able to address the Full Scope of the market, they shall have to eventually partner with a host of Government Agencies as well as not-for-profit organizations to develop ‘Real solutions” that help to empower the three key players viz. The Child, Parent and the Teacher. They shall need to bring around Curriculum supplements along with innovative teaching delivery mechanism so that a Child’s interest & curiosity are nourished, help in planning & conduct of specific activities that help a child participate in the learning process & identify his natural aptitudes. The sector should also empower Teachers/School Administration to be able to deliver proper “Guidance & Counselling” to the child/Parent so that the can together develop an “approach” to further the child’s talent & skill development efforts. Above all, the trio should be empowered to “research” its way out of their problems as well as to contribute positively to the society.
An Analysis of Education Sector in India
What needs to Change
An Analysis of Education Sector in India. Identify what needs to change & way forward for Entrepreneurs, Educationists, Parents and Students.
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