Weekly Update on Education

15 June 2010

Dreams Within Reach
The Hindu, June 13, 2010

In 2009, the National Confederation of Dalit Organisations (NACDOR), supported by the United Nations in India, conducted a ‘Shiksha Adhikar Yatra', a massive mobilisation drive in more than 100 villages of Lalitpur, Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh, and Udaipur, Chittorgarh, in Rajasthan, to increase enrolments in schools. As the Yatra team proceeded from village to village, they highlighted the fundamental right to education for all through street theatre performances and wall paintings.

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Education is Free But Uneasily Accessible
Binay Singh, the Times of India, June 11, 2010

How do authorities plan to implement the right to education in the new academic session in the face of acute shortage of primary and upper primary schools. The right to free and compulsory education is guaranteed to children as per the norms prescribed under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan. Authorities of elementary education department, however, are tight-lipped on the issue. "We have not received any instruction in this regard so far," Rajesh Kumar Singh, district coordinator of SSA, claimed when TOI contacted him on Friday.

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Govt Tough on ex-India Leave
The Times of India, June 10, 2010

The education department of Punjab government, which is in the process of implementing Right to Education Bill, has decided to get tough on teachers who are on ex-India leave. Suffering due to lack of adequate staff, the recruitment process for selection of 7,654 teachers has been completed and screening process for verification of their certificates is under way. About 50 teachers, who have proceeded on ex-India leave, have been issued notices as to why their services should not be terminated.

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Detaining Students Damages Psyche
M Ramya, The Times of India, June 9, 2010

The court ruling in the Don Bosco matriculation higher secondary school case should come as a wake up call to other schools that detain a child in a class for more than a year. Stakeholders second the Madras high court ruling, which says that a school cannot fail a student below class VIII under the Right to Education Act.

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Chhattisgarh Seeks to Free Schools from Security Forces
Akshaya Mukul, The Times of India, June 11, 2010

Faced with the problem of security forces occupying schools in Maoist areas and occasional attacks on schools by Maoists, Chhattisgarh government has proposed setting up residential schools amidst large human clusters. In a meeting with HRD minister Kapil Sibal on implementation of Right to Education Act, Chhattisgarh education minister Brijmohan Aggarwal said the state government was already building portacabin schools supported by Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan funds.

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1goal Campaign Aims to Get All Children to School
Sue Blaine, June 11 2010

Education bodies are using SA's hosting of the World Cup to highlight a global campaign to get millions of children to school. Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga yesterday received a memorandum from more than 40 organisations, representing more than 3-million people in SA, calling for an end to SA's, and the world's, education crisis.

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Universities to Start Community Colleges for Unskilled Workers
The Hindu, June 10, 2010

At least ten community colleges will be started by each university to provide vocational training to unskilled workers by September 1, a meeting chaired by Higher Education Minister K. Ponmudy decided on Wednesday. Universities would provide infrastructure and faculty support, while the Directorate of Technical Education would provide the course content and conduct the examinations.

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When Less is More
Aruna Sankaranarayanan, the Hindu, June 13, 2010

The “earlier the better” and “faster equals smarter” ethos is deeply embedded in our cultural psyches that it influences both parenting styles and school curricula. As we push children to achieve more and more, earlier and earlier, we don't realise that our children may pay a high price. Not only does early drilling and cramming steal the joy from learning but also creates emotional angst in the child. Moreover, the practice of introducing higher level concepts at younger ages also undermines children's cognitive foundations and thereby defeats its very purpose.

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Do School Districts Get What They Pay for? Predicting Teacher Effectiveness by College Selectivity, Experience, Etc.
Matthew M. Chingos

Holding a college major in education is not correlated with effectiveness in elementary and middle school classrooms, regardless of the university at which the major was earned. Teachers do become more effective with a few years of teaching experience, but (except in elementary reading) no gains—and some declines—in effectiveness appear in the second decade after a teacher has begun teaching. These and other results are obtained from estimations using value-added models that control for student characteristics as well as school and (where appropriate teacher) fixed effects that estimate teacher effectiveness in reading and math for Florida students in 4th through 8th grades for six school years, 2001-02 through 2006-07. The findings suggest that teacher selection and compensation policies are in need of revision.

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Total Out-of-School Adolescents of Lower Secondary School Age (in thousands) by Region, 2007

South and West Asia - 29147 (40%)
Sub-Saharan Africa- 21311 (30%)
East Asia and the Pacific- 10646 (15%)
Arab States- 4280 (6%)
Latin America and the Caribbean- 1977 (3%)
Central and Eastern Europe- 1946 (3%)
North America and Western Europe- 1334 (2%)
Central Asia- 392 (1%)

Source: UNESCO Institute for Statistics database, 2009.


Student First! Dialogue Series
School Ratings: Guide to Parental Choice

7 July 2010,

India Habitat Centre, Delhi

For more information

RTE Coalition

To initiate and continue the discussion amongst concerned groups and individuals on the issue of right of education and monitor the implementation of the RTE Act, an RTE Coalition has been formed. Join the coalition to make universal elementary education a reality in India. Log on to for more information. Bastiat Essay Competition

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2010 Fisher International Memorial Award

James Tooley’s “The Beautiful Tree” bags 2010 Fisher International Memorial Award.
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400 girl children from poor families of North East Delhi receive school vouchers for a period of 4 years.
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