Marathi schools: 'Only about 40% Class 5 students good at basic maths'

  • Puja Pednekar, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Dec 02, 2014 21:43 IST

A survey has found that just over 40% students in Class 5 in Marathi medium schools from Mumbai city and suburbs are good at basic mathematics. The results of the state-wide State Achievement Level Survey (SLAS), released on Monday, also found that the performance of Mumbai students in mathematics was worse than the state average of 50.76%.

The survey states that students’ fluency in Marathi is equally bad, with only 47% in Mumbai city and 55.5% in the suburbs being well-versed in the language. The state average stood at 50.76%.

The survey, conducted for the first time, tested the learning levels of Class 5 students in 2,937 Marathi medium schools across the state, which included representation from all 35 districts.

In Mumbai, 36.26% students scored less than 20 in mathematics, while 28.42% scored less than 20 in Marathi in each of the scientifically designed 50-mark test.

“We tested students based on the syllabus taught till Class 4, and divided the exam into two subjects – Mathematics and Marathi. Specific recommendations have been made based on the findings,” said NK Jarag, director, State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT), which conducted the survey.

Similar surveys will be conducted Class 2 onwards from the next academic year and will cover Marathi and Urdu medium schools.

Educationists blamed the misinterpretation of the no-detention policy under the Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) as one of the major reasons for the poor learning levels in students.

“The scheme is not being taken seriously in the country. Despite the high awareness level, teachers in the state think the no-fail policy is equivalent to not holding exams. They haven’t understood how to evaluate students’ performance by using the no-detention scheme,” said Farida Lambay, co-founder of NGO Pratham.

“Schools need to set age-appropriate minimum competencies for children. Assessments should be skill-based rather than content-based,” said Revathy Srinivasan, principal, Smt Sulochanadevi Singhania School, Thane.

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