New Delhi | Jan 22, 2010

School Enrolment of Muslim Children Improves

Enrolment rate of Muslim children in elementary education has witnessed a considerable improvement in 2008-09 against the previous years, a government report released today said. According to the report on 'Elementary Education in India: Progress towards Universalisation of Elementary Education', a total of 14.83 million Muslim children were enrolled in primary schools in 2008-09. They constitute 11.03 par cent of the total 134.38 million students.

Their percentage was 10.49 per cent in 2007-08 and 9.39 per cent in 2006-07, said the report prepared by National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA). The report was released by HRD Minister Kapil Sibal. The enrolment of Muslim girls is 48.93 per cent which is quite similar to overall enrolment of girls in primary schools.

The rate of Muslim enrolment in upper primary level has also increased to 9.13 per cent in 2008-09 against 8.54 per cent in the previous year. It was 7.52 per cent in 2006-07. About 53.35 million children enrolled into upper primary classes in 2008-09. Among them, the number of Muslim children is 4.87 million, the report said.

About 87,690 schools got more than 25 per cent Muslim enrolment in 2008-09. Similarly, 62,553 schools had above 50 per cent Muslim enrolment, the report said. NUEPA has developed school report cards of more than 1.29 million primary and upper primary schools across the country. Basic facilities like drinking water, toilets and infrastructure in elementary schools have marked improvements in 2008-09 compared to the previous year.

The average number of classrooms in the primary schools has improved to 3.1 in 2008-09 from three in 2007-08, it said. The average number of classrooms in a school is less than two in Assam while it more than 13 in Chandigarh. The students-classroom ratio, which was 35 in 2007-08, improved to 33 in 2008-09, it said.

The percentage of elementary schools having access to drinking water facility increased from 86.75 per cent in 2007-08 to 88 per cent last year. All schools in Delhi, Chandigarh, Daman Diu, Delhi, Lakshadweep and Tamil Nadu have been provided with drinking water facility. The common toilet facility in schools has also improved. While 62 per cent of schools had this facility in 2007-08, the percentage increased to 67 last year. The percentage of schools with separate toilet facility for girls increased from 50 to 53 during this period.

Haryana and Andaman and Nicobar are ahead of other states with nearly 95 per cent schools having toilet facilities. About 25 per cent schools in Arunachal Pradesh have this facility, the survey said. With regard to girls' toilets, Chandigarh is ahead of others. About 14 per cent of schools have computer facility. The percentage of such schools is as high as 85 in Chandigarh and as low as 0.68 in Bihar. While 40 per cent of the schools have ramps, 43 per cent of the government and aided schools have kitchen-sheds in their premises, the survey found.

Under the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA), 1.26 lakh primary and 48,000 upper primary schools have been opened in the country till September last year. There were 5.79 million teachers engaged in teaching in schools at elementary level in 2008-09. On an average, there were 4.5 teachers in a school in 2008-09. There were about 5.38 lakh para teachers, constituting 9.39 per cent of total number of teachers. About 54 per cent para teachers are graduates and above, the report said.