Nearly 75,000 primary schools in India have no classroom

April 17, 2007    

Nearly 75,000 primary schools in India have no classroom

New Delhi: India may claim that it is slowly becoming a knowledge hub, yet a survey by a university revealed Monday that nearly 75,000 schools at the elementary level have no classrooms.

The report, "Elementary Education in India: Where Do We Stand?" by National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NEUPA) said at least 10.15 percent of such schools are running without classrooms.

"Forget about buildings, 74,893 primary schools (Class I-V) have no classrooms. It's a great worrying point," said Arun Mehta, who was part of the countrywide survey.

The percentage of schools without classrooms in urban areas is 13.9 as against 9.6 in rural areas, the report said.

"Whopping 40.41 percent primary schools in Jharkhand have no classrooms," said Mehta, adding that 37.62 percent of primary schools in Jharkhand have only two classrooms.

Ved Prakash, vice chancellor of the university, said: "All these pupils study in tents and a large chunk of them under the sky. Both the private and the government sector should work together to solve this huge issue."

The survey covered over 1.1 million primary and upper primary schools across 604 districts of India of which nearly 67 percent are independent primary schools.

The report revealed that as many as 107,276 schools, both primary and upper primary, had only one classroom.

Of the over 1.1 million schools surveyed, 11 percent of the classrooms need major repairs and 21 percent need minor repairs, the report said.

Mehta pointed out that in Nagaland, 73 percent of classrooms need repairs.

"Of the existing classrooms in Nagaland, 73 percent, Meghalaya 77 percent, Assam 66 percent, Mizoram 64 percent, Arunachal Pradesh 64 percent, West Bengal 57 percent and Orissa 55 percent need repairing," Mehta said.

The report also found that 50 percent of classrooms in Bihar, 52 percent in Jammu and Kashmir, 48 percent in Jharkhand and 64 percent in Lakshadweep needed to be repaired. (IANS)