Education ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal, the states which are facing shortage of funds and teachers for implementing Right to Education Act (RTE), will meet Human Resources and Development Minister Kapil Sibal in New Delhi on Friday to find a solution to the problem.
These ministers will meet Sibal separately and discuss the problems faced by the states to implement RTE which makes education a fundamental right of every child in the country.
Though the law has been made effective from April 1, the states are facing problems in view of shortage of teachers. The Chief Ministers of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar have expressed inability to fund the implementation of the Act. West Bengal has also raised funds problem.
According to Reports on Demand and Supply Estimates of School Teachers and Teacher Educators (2007-08 to 2016-17) for Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, prepared by the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE), both the states portray a dismal picture with regard to school education.
Uttar Pradesh has 1,94,887 habitations out of which 38,543 are without primary schools or Education Guarantee Scheme (EGS) centres. About 7,457 habitations are eligible for primary schools as per norms.
The number of out-of-school children is 3.02 lakh, the report said quoting the state Household Survey. The literacy rate is 56 per cent against the national average of 65 per cent. Five per cent of children do not enroll into primary schools in the state.
There were 6,10,189 teachers positions in 1,97,143 lower primary and upper primary schools in 2006-07 in the state. They include 4,31,546 positions at lower primary and 1,78,643 at upper primary stages.
The additional demand for lower primary teachers was estimated to be 22,256 in 2007-08. This demand would go up to 25,384 in 2011-12, the report said.
The scenario is worse in Bihar where the literacy rate in is 47.53 per cent. There are 37,408 primary, 13,316 upper primary and 2,918 secondary and 660 senior secondary schools in 2006-07.
The primary schools have, infact, witnessed a negative growth over a period of five years from 2002-03. There were 40,511 primary schools in the state which came down to 37,408 in 2006-07.
The secondary and senior secondary schools have witnessed similar negative growth rate, the report said.
The projected additional demand for teachers at lower primary level was estimated to be 4,731 in 2007-08 and it would go upto 8,282 in 2011-12, the report said.
At upper primary stage, the projected demand for teachers was estimated to be 7,039 in 2007-08 and it may go upto 7116 in 2011-12. The situation is somewhat similar in West Bengal.