Since COVID Hit, Govt Schools Witness Rise In Enrollments, Private Suffers Massive Dip: Report

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Since COVID Hit, Govt Schools Witness Rise In Enrollments, Private Suffers Massive Dip: Report

Among the total number of students enrolling in government schools, the girls are more in number than boys, in all levels barring the pre-primary. There were nearly 62.39 lakh girls in pre-primary in 2019-20, but it dropped to 49.42 lakh a year later.

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The government schools in India have witnessed a steady rise in the number of enrolments since the coronavirus pandemic hit the country. The increase has been between 2019-20 and 2020-21. At the same time, the private institutions have recorded a significant dip in admissions, the Education Ministry revealed on Wednesday, March 9.

The data released by the Unified District Information System for Education Plus (UDISE+) indicated the financial distress caused by the pandemic.

Difference Seen In All Classes

According to the report, the pre-primary, primary (I-V) and upper classes (VI-VIII) accounted for the rise and fall in the enrolment of students in the schools.

Difference By Huge Margin

The pre-primary and primary level admissions have fallen to 22.28 lakh and 11.6 lakh, respectively. In government schools, the primary and upper primary grades have recorded a rise of 18.82 lakh and 9.28 lakh students, respectively.

Besides, 39.7 lakh students of government-aided, private schools from all the classes shifted to government schools.

Excluding pre-primary classes, the enrolment numbers rose from 25.10 crores in 2019-20 to 25.38 crore. Bur the pre-primary level classes saw a dip from 1,35,55,892 students in 2019-20, to 1,06,45,526 in 2020-21.

The report noted that the drop in the figures at the pre-primary level might have resulted from the postponement of school admission of young children during the pandemic.

"Although the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is cross-cutting, this is particularly noticed in the enrolment of young and vulnerable kids like pre-primary, class 1 and Children With Special Needs (CWSN)," The Indian Express quoted UDISE+.

Female Students More In Number

Among the total number of students enrolling in government schools, the girls are more in number than boys, in all levels barring the pre-primary.

Less No. Of Girls At Pre-Primary Level

At the pre-primary level, there were 62.39 lakh girls enrolled in 2019-20, but it dropped to 49.42 lakh a year later.

According to the report, its figures do not factor in the enrolment at the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) system that is run by the Ministry of Women and Child Welfare through the Anganwadi Centers, the stand-alone pre-primary education centres.

"At all the levels above primary, i.e., in upper primary, secondary and higher secondary, school enrolment has increased, showing an improvement in the ability of the system to retain more and more children in the system of school education over time," UDISE+ said.

The Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) has also improved across grades, the report shows. In 2020-21, the upper primary saw 92.2 per cent rise from 89.7 percent last year; in elementary, there was a 99.1 percent from 97.8 percent, a 79.8 percent rise from 77.9 percent in secondary and a 53.8 percent rise from 51.4 percent in the higher secondary section, respectively.

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Writer : Devyani Madaik
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