Right to Education in Uttarakhand
The education is the key for gaining knowledge, power of reasoning and judgment and preparing oneself or others intellectually for better life. It act as powerful tool to shape the destiny of a person and the whole nation also and it also differentiates a man from the beast. The education is also key formula to create equality of gender, community and society at large. In the ‘Neethishatakam’ by Bhartruhari (First Century B.C.) the importance has been emphasized as in following words: “Education is the special manifestation of man; Education is the treasure which can be preserved without the fear of loss; Education secures material pleasure, happiness and fame; Education is the teacher of the teacher; Education is God incarnate; Education secures honour at the hands of the State, not money. A man without education is equal to animal”. It is fact that in ancient period the education was not common for all peoples belonged to different categories and economically different groups. In this period the education is based on totally cast system and religion system. Most of educationally deprived children are particularly belongs to scheduled castes students, scheduled tribes, Muslim minorities, children with special needs, urban deprived children, working children and children from displaced families. Since ancient period condition of women was not good and deprives socially and educationally. This unequal educational status of women, particular group, and religion is the main cause of unequal level of society.
In India education is seems as a tradition and country other than India have such love of learning and early origin. In fact, education was no exotic to India. India is the home of 19% world children and most of population lives in rural areas, about one third of population is below the age of 18 years. Besides the population, India also has one third of world’s illiteracy.
To ensure education for all, by the year 2000, the world conference was held (1990) in Jomtein, Thailand, 155 countries including India have participated. In this conference following aims were decided:
- Care for development and early education of children in the age group 0-6 years.
- Spreading awareness about primary education.
- Motivating youngsters to learn more.
- Bringing down the illiteracy rate with a special focus on female literacy.
- Educate to improve over al quality of life.
Keeping in mind the status of basic education, Govt. of India has enacted the RTE (right of children to free and compulsory education Act, 2009). This act (RTE ACT 2009) for free and compulsory education of children inserted in Article 21-A in the constitution of India (86th Amendment) to ensures the fundamental right of children (6 to 14 years) for satisfactory and equitable quality education. This provision was enacted for children from disadvantaged group and weaker sections who have been denied or voluntary under various circumstances not been able or have admitted in the school to a class suitable to his/her age, to reduce the gap of learning and help him come par with other students of class.
Uttarakhand is known as the DevBhumi or Land of God and house of various religious places and of worships. A number of districts from the northwestern part of Uttar Pradesh and a portion of the Himalayan Mountain Range joined together form the state Uttarakhand. It is the 27th state of the country. Uttarakhand is the state of 13 districts. The Population of Uttarakhand as per the census of 2011 is 10,116,752 (males 5,154,178 and females 4,962,574). Most of the population (69.45%) of Uttarakhand resides in the rural areas, while rest of the 30.55% resides in urban areas. The literacy Rate of this state is 79.63 % (6,997,433) with male 88.33 % and female literacy at 70.70 %.
This state is a relatively new state of India, marked with special geographical and social diversity and has its own challenges for implementation of different policies. A number of barriers prevent children from getting access to education in the Uttarakhand state. “State is prone to natural calamities, about 2300 school buildings damaged during 2010 monsoon. About 14000 km, motor roads and 1000 km bridle path damaged. Disaster has thus put the state’s development clock back many years”. The social and geographical conditions of the state have major implications for education in general and more specifically. To prevent dropping out of schools by children, quality education is necessary. Many studies have shown that women education is the key to reduce the women’s discrimination and infant mortality rate can be reduced by women as well as child girl’s education.
On the basis of its geographic, it has been listed in ‘Special Category Status’ by Union of India. The high Himalayan ranges and glaciers form most of the northern parts of the state while the lower reaches are densely forested with rich habitat of wild animals. The state has a total of 16,826villages, of which 15,761 are inhabited (excluding forest settlements), as per the 2001 census. The rate of literacy of this state is 72 % (Census 2001), which is higher than the all-India level of literacy rate and the literacy rate of female is 60 %. The district Dehradun has the highest literacy rate, while district Haridwar has the lowest literacy rates at 64, these differences in literacy rates in different districts shown the differences in the infrastructure across regions.
Many studies in Uttarakhand have been carried out to know the growth of RTE and status of elementary education. The social and geographical conditions of the state have major implications for education in general and more specifically. To prevent dropping out of schools by children, quality education is necessary.
Seema S. through her study provides an insight into the status of implementation of RTE Act, in schools of rural area, awareness and understanding of the RTE Act amongst the teachers, parents, and students studying in Government Schools. In her study, it has been concluded that the public schools are up to the mark only in terms of enrollment and basic structure, maintenance was not well and quality of teaching was very minimal. The framed laws are not implemented with the true spirit in India. This study will try to analyze the status of educational level of children groups’ viz. child girls, SC, SC students and minority students after six years implementation of RTE.
In Vishwas Kumar and Another VS State of Uttarakhand, Honorable Sudhanshu Dhulia, observed the importance of the right to Education Act in the following words: “This is so because now under Article 21A of the constitution and the right to Education Act, it is not just a fundamental right of children to get elementary education but this right has now become a meaningful right for various reasons and more particularly because children will be imparted elementary education by qualified and trained teachers”.
A study was made by Anup Kumar in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand state and reported relatively low rates of enrolment in school and alarming dropout and failure rates. The children of educated parents have capability to take formal education but no doubt, uneducated parents are unable to do this. In many countries, like the UK, educational policy is subject to continuous change but unfortunately not in India.
Another study carried out by Bora B. S., in this study it has been found that more than five thousand government primary schools are going to close in Uttarakhand. This study confirmed that during 2013-2014 more than 178 primary schools have been closed due to Zero enrolment and more than 5,645 primary schools are going to close. This study also concluded that, 800 primary schools have below 5 students in each school, while remaining schools have below 20 students in each school.
A study was made to analyze the development of primary education in Dehradun district of Uttarakhand from 2000 to 2011, and it has been found that enrolments in government primary schools are consistently declining and enrolment growth rate was reported in most of years, while this rate was positive in district Dehradun in last decades. This study was also reported the enrolment shifting from government primary schools towards private primary schools. This shifting is may be due to migration of the people from rural to urban areas, negative teacher’s growth rate, and lack of basic facilities like toilets, electricity, playground, libraries, furniture and even school buildings.
Besides studies in Uttarakhand, many workers have made studies in another states to find out the status of RTE for free and compulsory education. In one of such study under Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation revealed that the number of classrooms, teachers, tables, and chairs were inadequate and infrastructure was in a very poor condition. It has been reported that only three classrooms and only two teachers looked after the entire school. Due to this poor condition of education, there is a need to strengthen teachers on aspects of motivation, pro-children attitudes, and creative teaching learning process. Appointment of suitable staff is also recommended in order to lessen the burden on teachers.
Mondal and Mete in their study of policy perspective for education of children with special needs has focused on the efforts that have been made for their education post-independence. They recommended a comprehensive change in the institutional arrangements and legal provisions as well changes in the attitudes and approach towards dealing with children with special needs.
From all above studies it is concluded that RTE at present is not at satisfactory level after such long period of implementation. The most of studies indicates the poor condition of elementary education and concluded that this condition is the creation of poor condition of infrastructure, teachers, condition, and parent’s illiteracy, social and economic discrimination.
Overall condition of primary education in Uttarakhand as well in other states of India is alarming and need to reconsider the whole education system. There is a need to monitor the programs running for school going children. A serious monitoring is required for implementation and progress of any programs.UKPCS Notes brings Prelims and Mains programs for UKPCS Prelims and UKPCS Mains Exam preparation. Various Programs initiated by UKPCS Notes are as follows:-
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