32,000 schools don't have a single student in India
NEW DELHI, Aug 9 - At a time when the county is facing a
shortage of educational institutions, over 32,000 schools do not have a single
student, a government survey has revealed.
These institutions, 48 per cent of
which are primary schools, are located mostly in rural areas and are in the
public sector, said the report 'Elementary Education in India 2005-06' prepared
by National University of Educational Planning and Administration
The survey, which covered 11,24,033
schools in 35 states and union territories, found that 2.92 per cent of these
schools had zero enrolment. Karnataka had the highest number of such schools,
standing at 7,945.
While 15,791 were primary schools,
the rest were upper primary, secondary and higher secondary schools, the report
Similarly, 69,353 schools or 6.17
per cent of the total number of schools have less than 25 students. There were
1,70,888 schools having between 26 and 50 students, the study
The percentage of schools with low
enrolment was less in Bihar, Delhi, Kerala and Uttar Pradesh, it said. All the
schools together have an average enrolment of 150.
"The main reasons for zero enrolment
is that these schools either don't have a single teacher or they may be having
para-teachers," Sailendra Sharma, a lecturer of Nuepa who was associated with
the survey said. The report found that about 23,000 schools were yet to be
provided with a teacher, while 1,03,000 schools were single-teacher
Sharma said, "In some areas,
migration of people continues because of climatic conditions or some other
factors and this accounts for low enrolment or zero enrolment of
He gave the example of Lahaul and
Spiti in Himachal Pradesh, where people tend to migrate from some areas due to
adverse climatic conditions in winter. "In view of such schools being in large
numbers, there is a need to thoroughly probe the reasons for zero enrolment,"
the report said. The factors responsible for meagre enrolment include poor
infrastructure in the schools.
As many as 1,02,227 schools - or
9.54 per cent of the total schools imparting elementary education - had only one
classroom, the report said. "We suggested that the directors of state education
departments should take steps to equip schools with basic infrastructure and
adequate teachers to attract more students and increase the enrolment," Sharma
said. Khaleej Times