Weekly Update on Education

26 October 2010

British Kids Log On and Learn Math — in Punjab
Julia Werdigier, New York Times, October 24, 2010

Once a week, year six pupils at Ashmount Primary School in North London settle in front of their computers, put on their headsets and get ready for their math class. A few minutes later, their teachers come online thousands of kilometers away in the Indian state of Punjab.

Ashmount is one of three state schools in Britain that decided to outsource part of their teaching to India via the Internet. The service — the first of its kind in Europe — is offered by BrightSpark Education, a London-based company set up last year. BrightSpark employs and trains 100 teachers in India and puts them in touch with pupils in Britain through an interactive online tutoring program.

More [+]

National Vocational Educational framework in a year: Sibal
Business Standard, October 21, 2010

Union human resource development minister Kapil Sibal plans to come out with a national vocational educational framework within one year.

He said the proposed framework would empower those students who do not want to become doctors, engineers or IT professionals.

The Union HRD minister was addressing the Higher Education Conclave 2010, organised by Indian Chamber of Commerce, in Kolkata today.

.More [+]

Change classroom architecture
Puja Pednekar, Daily News & Analysis, October 23, 2010

To bring in quality education, India needs to free knowledge from restrictions like intellectual property rights. There is also a need to change the architecture of classrooms and bring down the rigidity of subjects in the framework of national curriculum. This is the message emanating from the Confederation of Indian Industry’s two-day National Summit on Quality in Education..

More [+]

Indian universities draw Chinese
Karen Ma, Mint, October 22 2010

Before Wu Shunmian arrived to study at Delhi University, he was under the impression that India was a part of Africa, and that every Indian was a Buddhist. But the ignorance ran both ways. Many “Indians have no idea Hong Kong is a part of China”, says 23-year-old Wu.

Sixty years after India and China normalized ties, such odd presumptions persist—and though an exchange of students like Wu is a good way of removing these misconceptions, red tape and diplomatic barriers can stand in the way.

More [+]

Higher education allowance for Muslim girls
Swati Sengupta, The Times of India, October 25, 2010

Three years ago, there were hardly enough scholarships for poor Muslims in Bengal, especially for women. Cut to 2010 post Sachar Committee report and the Lok Sabha polls there is a flush of funds for education and self-employment of Muslims. And more so, for the doubly marginalised poor Muslim women.

The latest to be added is graduation and post-graduation (PG) allowances for girls. Those with family income lesser than Rs 2.5 lakh annually will get Rs 9,000 at graduation and Rs 14,400 a year for PG or its equivalent. What's more, no specific marks are required to qualify for this allowance. There isn't any cap on the number of beneficiaries as well.

More [+]

RTE hits roadblock as civic bodies look the other way
Maroosha Muzaffar, Indian Express, Oct 25 2010

The Directorate of Education (DoE) is having a tough time implementing the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act in Delhi with the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and the New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) refusing to hand over their schools to the Delhi government. The DoE had asked both civic bodies to either upgrade their schools to Class VIII or hand them over to the department, so that a “unified body” could run schools across the Capital.

More [+]

With 50,000 kids in school, Andhra takes RTE lead
Akshaya Mukul, The Times of India, October 25, 2010

Even as the Centre is yet to firm up its view about screening of children for admission in residential schools, Andhra Pradesh has successfully given admission to 50,000 children in 600 state government-run residential schools without any entrance test and following the Right to Education Act in letter and spirit.

Andhra residential schools, which have been consistently producing good results, have even given reservation higher than 25% stipulated under the RTE Act.

More [+]

Thane civic teachers flunk surprise test
Sobiya Mughal, Mumbai Mirror, October 21, 2010

Teachers at municipal schools in Thane will think twice before pulling up students fumbling in math and science, at least till they get their own calculations and chemistry right.

On Wednesday, officials of Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC), led by corporator Hanmant Jagdale, and Standing Committee member Najeeb Mulla, caught around 10 teachers in four civic schools on the wrong foot by making them undergo surprise tests.

More [+]

Research Paper
The Effect of Pre-Primary Education on Primary School Performance
Samuel Berlinski, Sebastian Galiani and Paul J. Gertler

Although the theoretical case for universal pre-primary education is strong, the empirical foundation is weak. In this paper, we contribute to the empirical case by investigating the effect of a large expansion of universal pre-primary education on subsequent primary school performance in Argentina. We estimate that one year of preprimary school increases average third grade test scores by 8 percent of a mean or by 23 percent of the standard deviation of the distribution of test scores. We also find that preprimary school attendance positively affects student's self-control in the third grade as measured by behaviors such as attention, effort, class participation, and discipline.

More [+]

Statistics on Indian Education
Youth (1524 years) literacy rate, 20032007, female
Primary school enrolment ratio 20032008, gross, male
Primary school enrolment ratio 20032008, gross, female
Primary school enrolment ratio 20032008, net, male
Primary school enrolment ratio 20032008, net, female

Source: UNICEF


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.



18 December 2010, 9 am - 6 pm

The Theatre, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, India

To read more click here



400 girl children from poor families of North East Delhi receive school vouchers for a period of 4 years.
For details visit website


Support Children's Right to Education of Choice!

For more details on how to support, log on to or email us at [email protected]


Student First! Dialogue Series

Social Audit in School Education

18 November, 2010

India Habitat Centre, Delhi

For more information clikc here
























This is our 107th edition. Please give your feedback to make it more useful to you at [email protected]

Disclaimer: Copyright of the contents of this newsletter remains with the original author/publisher.