Weekly Update on Education

21 July 2009

Right to Education Bill passed in Rajya Sabha
Mint, 20 July 2009

New Delhi: Sixteen years after the Supreme Court ruled that elementary education should be made a fundamental right, the Rajya Sabha on Monday passed legislation to provide free and compulsory education to every child in the age group of 6-14 years and from class I to VIII. It also fixed responsibility on schools to reserve at least 25% of their seats for children from the weaker and disadvantaged sections, specified by the government as those from scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and educationally or economically backward classes. The Bill also proposes to ban capitation fees, admission interviews and private tuition. More [+]

Hillary calls for inclusive education gap
The Hindu, 19 July 2009

Mumbai: Though the education system in the U.S. is good, its reach is not entirely inclusive, visiting Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said here on Saturday. “We have great universities but not for everyone and not for students who fall behind.” Ms. Clinton said education was an issue “very near and dear” to her heart. The occasion was a discussion at St. Xavier’s College, on the state of education in India and the U.S., where she had for company Bollywood actor Aamir Khan. She praised him for being an “advocate for education.” More [+]

Delhi government to set up 3 public schools
The Times of India, 16 July 2009

NEW DELHI: The increasing success of government schools in CBSE exams seems to have encouraged the government to go ``public''. The Delhi government is planning to open three senior secondary schools in the city on the lines of private schools. And the fees will be as steep. Education minister Arvinder Singh Lovely told TOI that a proposal would be presented to the cabinet soon. More [+]

New Research from the Center on Reinventing Public Education
Centre for Reinventing Public Education, July 2009

A new study by the Center on Reinventing Public Education finds that many low-income parents would choose to send their children to a better school outside their neighborhood if not for transportation problems. Over one-third of parents surveyed for the study “considered another school but, facing some transportation challenges, decided to enroll their child in the closest school,” say the authors of Drivers of Choice: Parents, Transportation, and School Choice. These parents are significantly less satisfied with their current school than are parents for whom transportation was not a barrier. More [+]

SSA Money spent in vain on textbooks in Jharkhand: CAG
Business Standard, 14 July 2009

The Jharkhand government printed books in five tribal languages for primary school children but failed to appoint teachers on time leading to a wasteful expenditure of Rs 1.05 crore, a CAG report has said."Printing and distribution of books worth Rs 1.05 crore without the support of teaching staff defeated the very purpose of promoting education in tribal language and resulted in wasteful expenditure of Rs 1.05 crore," the report said. More [+]

J8 calls for quality education
The Hindu, 15 July 2009

NEW DELHI: Dream of an India where all children will receive quality education without discrimination is what prompted Sanjukta Pangi from Orissa, Samuel Venkatesan from Tamil Nadu and Narendra Kumar from Uttar Pradesh to push for the inclusion of quality education in the agenda of the UNICEF’s Junior 8 (J8) summit, held parallel to the G8 meet in Italy last week. The youngsters said education was a key concern. More [+]

Scheme to impart secular education in Madarsas
Business Standard, 14 July 2009

The government is devising a scheme for impacting mainstream education at Islamic religious schools or Madarsas, the Rajya Sabha was informed today. Replying to questions, Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal said the government was developing a scheme to impart secular education in Madarsas without impacting the religious education they disseminate. More [+]

Education reforms: A forced necessity
Zee News , 15 July 2009

When Kapil Sibal announced his idea of restructuring the entire education system, it was met with a mixed response. Some believed it was good to reduce the stress level of students while others had their own reservations over the issue. The changes that he proposed were making Class X board optional, marking system to be replaced by grading system and free education up to Class XII apart from regularizing Madarssa education. These are revolutionary changes and can set up the agenda for the future of education in India. More [+]

Over the moon
Business Standard, 18 July 2009

Thousands of books have resulted from the US space programme — Armstrong and Collins themselves wrote a few (ghostwritten, of course, because astronauts of that era were jocks, not writers). Since the 1980s, after the National Air and Space Museum opened in Washington, DC, and since NASA cleverly started producing reading and teaching material for children, several astronauts of the early era have written books for young readers on their experiences in space. More [+]

Percentage of primary pupils in schools that had not been visited BY an external inspector in the previous two years

Sri Lanka1.2%
Source - A View Inside Primary Schools - A World Education Indicators (WEI) cross-national study. UNESCO Institute for Statistics, Montreal, 2008 .
Read the full study


Action for School Admission Reforms (ASAR) More+

Action for School Admission Reforms (ASAR) is School Choice Campaign's initiative to usher in fairness and transparency in nursery admissions. If parents in your city too are suffering, please write to us at


School Choice Campaign launches

400 girl children from poor families of North East Delhi will receive school vouchers for a period of 4 years.
For further details email at


Dialogue Series on Quality Education for All

Date: 8 August 2009 (6:30-8:00pm)
Venue: Casuarina Hall, India Habitat Centre

The August dialogue will focus on the school fee hike issue. Please send us your suggestions on what aspect of the issue you would recommend the forum to address.
Email at


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