India has met its goal of universal primary education and as per the findings of the ‘Education for All (EFA) Global Monitoring Report 2015’ by UNESCO, it has reduced the number of ‘out of school’ children by more than 90%. In fact, “India is predicted to be the only country in South and West Asia to have an equal ratio of girls to boys in both primary and secondary education,” UNESCO informed.
“Education has to be repeatedly advocated as a fundamental human right, it should not be commoditised and innovative funding models need to be put in place,” says Nobel peace prize winner, Kailash Satyarthi.
Of all the participating countries, 52% has achieved the target of universal enrolment in primary education, 10% are close and the remaining 38% are far or very far from achieving it, the report shows. “This leaves almost 100 million children still not completing primary education. A lack of focus on the marginalised has left the poorest five times less likely to complete a full cycle of primary education than the richest and over a third of out of school children living in conflict affected zones,” the report reveals.
As compared to 1999, nearly 50 million more children attend a primary school now. India is among the 69% of countries that is focussed to attain gender parity at the primary level by 2015.
“The numbers of pupils per teacher decreased in 83% countries between 1990 and 2012 at the primary level,” says the report. However, getting trained teachers in school is a challenge in one third of countries. In fact, there are less than 50% trained teachers in several sub-Saharan African countries.
“India has made exemplary progress in helping children gain access to pre-primary and primary education since the global education goals were set in 2000. India’s example clearly shows that with sufficient political will and resources the world can step up to meet the new education target by 2030,” says Aaron Benavot, director, Global Monitoring Report 2015 in a release. “To achieve global change in promoting a more sustainable future, all governments, including India, must mobilize new resources for education. International partners must ensure that aid is distributed to those most in need.”