Tuesday, 7 July 2015

India made ‘impressive progress’ in providing primary education: UN Report

India has made “impressive” progress in providing primary education to its children but it is still struggling to achieve similar results in lower secondary education and has the largest number of out-of-school adolescents, a UN study said today.
According to the study by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the Education for All Global Monitoring Report (EFR GMR), 124 million children and adolescents are now out of school while international aid to education continues to remain below 2010 levels.
“India has made impressive progress in the provision of primary education but is struggling to do the same for lower
secondary education,” the report said.
In 2011, the latest year with data, more than 16 million young adolescents of lower secondary school age were not enrolled in school in India. In addition, Bangladesh, Mexico, Indonesia, Niger, Pakistan and the Syrian Arab Republic each had more than 1 million out-of-school adolescents. The report noted that India is providing financial resources to help children with disabilities attend mainstream schools and adapt school infrastructure. In addition, teachers are being trained on inclusive education, with resource centres established to support clusters of schools. India, which has the largest number of out-of-school adolescents, has seen a reorientation of external support from basic to secondary education between 2012 and 2013: aid to basic education in India fell from USD 100 million to USD 27 million and aid to secondary education rose from USD 21 million to USD 232 million between 2012 and 2013. According to the latest UNESCO Institute for Statistics data, there were more than 0.5 million out-of-school children of primary school age in at least 19 countries. At least one million children were denied the right to education in India, Indonesia, Kenya, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Sudan, Sudan and Tanzania. India had 1.7 million out of school children of primary school age in 2012. The latest numbers show that some 24 million children will never enter a classroom with girls remaining the most disadvantaged cohort figuring in the study. In South and West Asia alone, 80 per cent of out-of-school girls are unlikely to start school compared to just 16 per cent for their male counterparts. UNESCO’s Director General Irina Bokova pointed to warnings that unless countries “make serious commitments” towards increasing education aid, the ambitious targets made by the international community promising 12 years of free and equitable access to quality education “could remain elusive for millions of children and youth.” Despite a six per cent increase in aid to education, investment levels are four per cent lower today than in 2010 and risk stagnating for the next few years. “Aid needs to be shooting upwards, not creeping up by a few percentage points,” declared Aaron Benavot, Director of the EFA GMR. Estimates suggest that it will cost an extra USD 39 billion to provide the 12 years of education to everyone in low and lower-middle income countries.

Source: http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/india-made-impressive-progress-in-providing-primary-education-un-report/#sthash.vcOfbJRt.dpuf

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Monday, 6 July 2015

The state of higher education in India

When Smriti Irani was chosen to be India’s Minister for Human Resources Development in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet, sceptics immediately pounced on her lack of formal education. Many felt otherwise, for she is feisty, energetic and articulate and these qualities, it was felt, would more than make up for her dubious academic qualifications. Has she shattered these high expectations? Are her oratorical skills being fritted away? Combativeness is a strength but not always. She should get off the back of centres of higher learning like the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIMA) and other schools of excellence. And what indeed is the state ofhigher education in India?
The Congress party’s Mani Shankar Aiyar and the historian Ramachandra Guha have written extensively on Irani’s failings and the trend seen since her appointment of creeping ‘saffronisation’ of education. Many readers may contest the use of the expression ‘saffronisation’ in this context, for it means different things to different people and to some it might seem as an attempt to devalue, deride and mock the glory of ancient India. The study of Sanskrit at the expense of German made headlines recently and Irani’s combativeness was put to good use, as there are scholarly essays that argue that learning Sanskrit can be of great value in computer programming and coding. Ancient India has much to teach modern India and Shashi Tharoor wrote an excellent article extolling the virtues of ancient India but stressing the need for a healthy dose of scientific temper while reading these scripts from antiquity. Sadly it is this recent obsession with Hindu exceptionalism that clouds a fuller understanding of India, modern or ancient. India’s higher education system is impressive but only on paper; though the third largest in the world behind the United States and China, it sadly lacks internationally recognised schools except for a few. And even these appear only in the top 100 or 200, barring the Indian Institute of Science Bengaluru, which ranked 22nd in 2014, the IIMA, which was ranked 7th by the Financial Times in 2011 and the University of Calcutta, ranked 38 in 2005. Incidentally, this was the first multi-disciplinary university in modern India, established in 1857.
The trends seen world-wide show a close linkage between higher educational institutions and research bodies, whether in the private or public domain. There is an umbilical connection here as research drives the surge for excellence and it is a two way process; both sides benefit. India, though an early entrant to scientific research, concentrated heavily on establishing and funding autonomous institutions that until very recently were completely isolated from universities or seats of higher learning. Countries like Taiwan and South Korea, much later entrants, did not make these mistakes and are way ahead of India.
Close scrutiny
Autonomy is another key mantra in spawning world famous universities. W.R. Niblett, Professor ofhigher education, University of London notes that “The first justification of university autonomy lies here; if any subject is to be studied in a way as to yield truth and insight … it must be studied not just instrumentally but autonomously and this applies to business management and veterinary science”. How does this square with Irani’s drive to throttle the IIM’s autonomy granted to it years ago? The IIMs, and in particular IIMA, need our special attention. The IIM Bill 2015 that Irani is vigorously championing and is the cause of a flurry of debates and public activism requires close scrutiny. First, the two oldest IIMs, Calcutta and Ahmedabad, and others that followed, were created as autonomous institutions for the very reasons put forward by Professor Niblett. They are publicly funded to an extent but they have always been out of reach of the Indian University establishment and that is precisely the reason why they do not have degree awarding rights. Consequently these institutions hand out diplomas but in no way has that dimmed the prestige and recognition conferred on its alumina.
Why then would these institutions give up their hard earned rights? The IIM Bill 2015 has some merits but at the heart of this draft legislation is the overweening craving to control and wield influence on these institutions. And to be fair to Irani this predates her and even her predecessor, the highly educated polymath Kapil Sibal of the Congress party, who was attempting to do the same thing. Recently The Hindu newspaper thundered in its editorial ‘Give IIMs their freedom’ and questioned the purpose of this bill pointing out ominously that the word ‘regulate’ finds repeated mention in the bill.
IIMA was formed in 1961 and the book ‘The IIMA Story’ by Praful Anubhai tells us how it was born, who were the key players and what has made it synonymous with success. Its founding fathers were two famous Gujaratis — Vikram Sarabhai and Kasturbhai Lalbhai — and IIMA was one of the first public-private partnerships in education in India.
Would a prime minister who takes such enormous pride in his Gujarati roots let any harm come to this prized asset? Will Irani, one of Modi’s storm troopers, be asked to step down?
– Gulf News
Source :- http://www.dailykashmirimages.com/news-the-state-of-higher-education-in-india-82527.aspx

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Over one-third population in rural India illiterate: Socio-economic census

Over one-third of Indian population living in rural areas is illiterate even after 68 years of independence, according to the Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011.
Rural India Education
Rural India Education
Around 64 percent of the rural Indian population is literate, the Census data showed.
Rajasthan leads the pack of illiterate states with 47.58 percent of its population falling in that category, followed by Madhya Pradesh with 44.19 percent of its people in rural areas being illiterate.
Bihar is at the third place with 43.85 percent and followed by newly carved state Telangana with 40.42 percent population belonging to this category.
However, the most literate state of Kerala has only 11.38 percent population falling under the illiterate category.
After Kerala, Goa has the least illiterate population with 15.42 percent and Sikkim at the third spot with 20.12 percent.
Himachal Pradesh has also done well in terms of improving its literacy rate. The state has only 22.05 percent illiterate population.
All India average of the population having below primary education is 13.97 percent, while middle education pass out is 13.53 percent.
The percentage of graduate and higher education is only 3.45 percent across the country.
However, Goa is ahead of Kerala in term of population with graduate and above educationqualification. While Kerala only has 7.75 percent falling in that category, 9.48 percent Goa’s population is graduate and above.
Source : http://www.firstpost.com/india/over-one-third-population-in-rural-india-illiterate-socio-economic-census-2326248.html

Friday, 3 July 2015

Madrasas Not Schools If They Don’t Teach Subjects Like Math, Says Maharashtra Government

The Maharashtra government has said Madrasas or schools for Islamic instruction, and any other institutions that do not offer formal education, will not be recognised as schools and will not be eligible for state funding until they teach subjects like Science, Math and Social Sciences.
“Those schools which do not follow the curriculum approved by the state government will not be recognised as schools. Therefore, children studying in Madrasas or in any other institutions based only on religious studies will not be counted among school students,” said Dilip Kamble, Minister of State for Minority Affairs.
He also said that the Maharashtra government plans to conduct a survey on Saturday for a head count of students in the state who are being taught in the informal education sector. These students will be marked as “out of school.”
The aim of the exercise, Mr Kamble said, is to ensure such students can be “included in the mainstream.”
The BJP-led state government had earlier this month asked Madrasas in the state to include thosesubjects in their curriculum to continue getting government funds. There are about 1.5 lakh students enrolled in 1900 madrasas in the state.
Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi of the BJP explained, “The education being provided by Madrasas is good, while some of them are incorporating mainstream education. Some of the Madrasas which don’t have the means to do so, they need to be encouraged and given help.”
“It is ill-designed and ill-timed, I don’t know why they are doing it,” said Kamal Farooqui of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board. Madrasas, he said, are part of formal education and their students get direct admission to universities.
The Nationalist Congress Party or NCP’s Nawab Malik criticised the state government for “ignoring Madrasa modernisation, whether it is giving salaries to their teachers for English, Marathi and Mathematics or incorporating central schemes.”
The previous Congress-NCP government had launched a “Madrasa modernisation scheme” in 2013, but that dispensation too did not recognise them as schools.
Source : http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/maharashtra-government-de-recognises-madrasas-says-they-dont-give-formal-education-777498

Monday, 5 January 2015

Distance/Correspondence MBA

Ipsita Sarkar Gupta | shiksha.com

Let us start this article with the simplest questions.

What is a Correspondence or Distance Learning MBA (Masters of Business Administration)?

As the name suggests, distance MBA programme is pursued via correspondence, i.e., remote communication between two parties. Education in this format focuses on imparting lessons to students, who are not physically present in a classroom.

Who should pursue it?

It is chiefly meant for people with limited time and resources. A working professional, fresh graduate, or stay-at-home mother – anyone interested in pursuing an MBA course can opt for it. All one requires is a bachelor’s degree, meeting the course eligibility criteria. Cost of the course is much less than regular or part-time MBA.

MBA is often deemed necessary to climb the ladders of corporate success. But, it is very difficult to juggle work, family and study. Hence, an effective hassle-free but quality management degree becomes essential. “Qualitative education is crucial. Correspondence courses are convenient for working executives. There is no financial instability for the candidate or the requirement for geographical relocation,” says, Anuradha Manjul, public relation officer, IIM Lucknow.

However, distance mode education requires dedication and disciple. Absence of regular or part-time classes can lead to distraction and students not taking up lessons properly.

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Happy New Year 2015 to all

Wisdom School of Management (WSM-DE) is one of the leading autonomous distance learning and part time educational institute in India. It established in the year 2006. It is working under WSM Educational Trust (Registered under Indian Trust Act, 1882) and accredited by JAS-ANZ (Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand)
WSM-DE offers various courses from Diploma to Masters such as DBA, BBA, MBA, PGDBA, BSc and MSc, Diploma Engineering, B. Tech., M. Tech., BSc. IT & CS, MSc. IT & CS, BCA, MCA, PGDCA, BSc. MLT, BFA & MFA, D. PHARMA, LLB, B.Ed., BJMC, MJMC etc.

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