Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Pakistani Children Outperform Indian Children on Math and Reading Skills Tests

Recent World Bank report on student learning in South Asia is depressing. Sri Lanka is the sole exception to the overall low levels of achievement for primary and secondary school kids in the region.  The report documents with ample data from various assessments to conclude that "learning outcomes and the average level of skill acquisition in the region are low in both absolute and relative terms". The report covers education from primary through upper secondary schools.

Source: World Bank Report on Education in South Asia 2014

Buried inside the bad news is a glimmer of what could be considered hope for Pakistan's grade 5 and 8 students outperforming their counterparts in India. While 72% of Pakistan's 8th graders can do simple division, the comparable figure for Indian 8th graders is just 57%. Among 5th graders, 63% of Pakistanis and 73% of Indians CAN NOT divide a 3 digit number by a single digit number, according to the World Bank report titled "Student Learning in South Asia: Challenges, Opportunities, and Policy Priorities".  The performance edge of Pakistani kids  over their Indian counterparts is particularly noticeable in rural areas. The report also shows that Pakistani children do better than Indian children in reading ability.

Source: World Bank Report on Education in South Asia 2014


Here are some excepts from the World Bank report:

Unfortunately, although more children are in school, the region still has a major learning challenge in that the children are not acquiring basic skills. For example, only 50 percent of grade 3 students in Punjab, Pakistan, have a complete grasp of grade 1 mathematics (Andrabi et al. 2007). In India, on a test of reading comprehension administered to grade 5 students across the country, only 46 percent were able to correctly identify the cause of an event, and only a third of the students could compute the difference between two decimal numbers (NCERT 2011). Another recent study found that about 43 percent of grade 8 students could not solve a simple division problem. Even recognition of two-digit numbers, supposed to be taught in grade 2, is often not achieved until grade 4 or 5 (Pratham 2011). In Bangladesh, only 25 percent of fifth-grade students have mastered Bangla and 33 percent have mastered the mathematics competencies specified in the national curriculum (World Bank 2013). In the current environment, there is little evidence that learning outcomes will improve by simply increasing school inputs in a business-as-usual manner (Muralidharan and Zieleniak 2012).

In rural Pakistan, the Annual State of Education Report (ASER) 2011 assessment suggests, arithmetic competency is very low in absolute terms. For instance, only 37 percent of grade 5 students can divide three-digit numbers by a single-digit number (and only 27 percent in India); and 28 percent of grade 8 students cannot perform simple division. Unlike in rural India, however, in rural Pakistan recognition of two-digit numbers is widespread by grade 3 (SAFED 2012). The Learning and Educational Achievement in Punjab Schools (LEAPS) survey—a 2003 assessment of 12,000 children in grade 3 in the province—also found that children were performing significantly below curricular standards (Andrabi et al. 2007). Most could not answer simple math questions, and many children finished grade 3 unable to perform mathematical operations covered in the grade 1 curriculum. A 2009 assessment of 40,000 grade 4 students in the province of Sindh similarly found that while 74 percent of students could add two numbers, only 49 percent could subtract two numbers (PEACE 2010).


Source: World Bank Report on Education in South Asia 2014




The report relies upon numerous sources of data, among them key government data (such as Bangladesh’s Directorate of Primary Education; India’s National Sample Survey, District Information System of Education, and National Council of Education Research and Training Assessment; and Pakistan’s National Education Assessment System); data from nongovernmental entities (such as Pakistan’s Annual Status of Education Report, India’s Student Learning Study, and its Annual Status of Education Report); international agencies (such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development [OECD] Programme for International Student Assessment [PISA] 2009+ for India; the World Bank Secondary Education Quality and Access Enhancement Project in Bangladesh); and qualitative studies undertaken for the report (such as examining decentralization reforms in Sri Lanka and Pakistan). The study also uses the World Bank Systems Approach for Better Education Results (SABER) framework to examine issues related to ECD, education finance, assessment systems, and teacher policies.

I hope that this report serves as a wake-up call for political leaders and policymakers in Pakistan to redouble their efforts with significant additional resource allocations for nutrition, education and healthcare.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Who's Better for Pakistan Human Development?

History of Literacy in Pakistan

Myths and Facts About Out-of-School Children in Pakistan

PISA, TIMSS Results Confirm Low Quality of Indian Education

India Shining, Bharat Drowning

Learning Levels and Gaps in Pakistan by Jishnu Das and Priyanka Pandey

Pasi Sahlberg on why Finland leads the world in education

CNN's Fixing Education in America-Fareed Zakaria

PISA's Scores 2011

Poor Quality of Education in South Asia

Infections Cause Low IQs in South Asia, Africa?

Peepli Live Destroys Western Myths About India

PISA 2009Plus Results Report

20 comments:

Gina Desai said...

I am not sure what you are trying to convey by your post. I hope you are not trying to say Indians are not as intelligent. That would be ill advised and Hitleresque.

I am 50 and I still have trouble with maths and around 5th STD I was already thinking about the ARTS track. Our school provided three tracks, Science, Commerce and Arts beginning the 6th grade.

I work for a major news magazine which has world-wide circulation both in print and on-line.

Hopewins said...

^^RH: "I hope that this report serves as a wake-up call for political leaders and policymakers in Pakistan to redouble their efforts..."
--------------

Nope. Won't happen.

You just made the age-old mistake of saying that we are doing better than India. Whenever that happens, our elite in Islamabad just rest on their laurels and will make no extra effort.

You see, our government always tracks India. If the Indians are doing better than we are in some area, only then GOP will redouble their efforts to 'catch up' in that area.

On the other hand, if we are doing better than India in some area, then GOP people will just congratulate each other and not make any major additional effort in that area.

Unfortunately, we never compare ourselves to Korea or Singapore. We always use India as our yardstick and so we aim very low. Since we aim low, we achieve low. This is the tragedy of our intellectual and emotional connection to the mess that is Soviet-inspired India.

Anonymous said...

This is the problem. Scientific thinking is not about maths as a subject, but as a concept. While i agree that indians need to improve their math skills, i think division and simple arithmetic is a poor indicator. You have calculators and computers to replace human intelligence to be wasted on such mundane things. I think Pakistan would do well to teach children to use concepts like application of maths into science and vice versa. To start with the concepts of Zero and Infinity are likely to provide good foundation. Human kind can excel only by innovation. As an Indian i would love to see pakistani children being awarded the noble prize. Children are our future and we have to teach them to compete with themselves rather than others.

The only people who dont believe this are the politicians who are interested only in their gains. They deprieve the children of scientific thinking for political gains.

I only hope voices like yours make people understand that there is hope until you give up.

CanadianBoy said...

So Buddist Majority Srilank is ahead of Muslim Majority Pakistan and Hindu Majority India in most indicators,even more impressive since they had been in civil war with Indian-supported Tamil-Hindu terrorist for decades.My hats off to Srilanka, smart and determined people.

pacman said...

Anonymous said>> Scientific thinking is not about maths as a subject, but as a concept

That's what maths is, describing knowledge in numbers/ numerical / empirical form.
If your hindu ego was not enormous, you would have made the connection and be better at maths ;).

Khalid K. said...

Riaz Bhai:
Thanks for making me feel good.
God Bless You. Ameen

Anonymous said...

@pacman: but isnt that what i said. I am sorry if i have sounded egoistic or if have seemed to impose hinduism as superior to any faith. I intended neither. I found this subject addressed some really core issues about education and that is why posted my views.

My main worry is that children like my daughter who is in class 2 is thought to do things that calculators can do. They are made into human calculators. Can Humanity progress by using intelligence on mundane arithmetic problems.

To put it in a different way, maths can only help you if you know how to express a problem mathematically. once you do this, it is a mechanical process to solve it.The the intelligence comes in only in interpreting those numbers as a solution to the problem.

Maths students are taughtto solve Differentiation, integration, matrix problems and not where and how it is applied even in class 10.

i dont like to differentiate between children on the basis of nationality or religion. Education is a humanitarian cause. A Nicola Tesla, benefitted the whole world, and that is why i believe that children should compete with themselves and not with others

That may be a reason why Thomas Edison was a 5th class dropout!!:)

Anonymous said...

@pacman: Manjul Bhargava had the following to say.

How important, in your opinion, is mathematics in Indian culture?

Mathematics and mathematical thinking have been an important aspect of Indian culture for a long time. From ancient philosophical verses like "Poornasya poornamaadaaya poornamevaavashishyate" (Infinity minus infinity can still be infinity) that reflect mathematical thinking, to the inherently mathematical structure of the alphabets and phonetics of Indian languages, to the discovery of zero and negative numbers, combinatorics, trigonometry, calculus, and more - so much mathematics has been discovered for ages in a way that is deeply intertwined in Indian culture.

Anonymous said...

There is not need to compare to India to prove that pakistan is better. Being an Indian, don't know to what end it serves.
There is no doubt that there are lot of areas in which India is lagging and has to improve. However it will be better for pakistan to look inward if it really wants to improve.

I also noticed that people who get very patriotic have migrated to a developed country and have decided to live their from now onwards. Patriotism means also living in their own country thick and thin and being part of the solution.

Riaz Haq said...

It was a historic day for Pakistan scrabble contingent taking part in the 6th Sri Lanka Interna­tional Scrabble Champion­ship when its youngest member, nine-year old Hasham Hadi Khan, created a new world record by scoring an eye-popping 878 points against Matheesha De Silva of Sri Lanka.

According to the Guinness Book of world records the highest score ever recorded in a scrabble match was made by Toh Wei Bin of Singapore who scored 850 against Rick Kennedy of Scotland in 2012. No score of 800 plus has been witnessed in an international tournament.

Hasham’s scores included a triple-triple play for his word “Gruntles” and inclu­ded three more bingos in “Sheriat, Retsina and Headers.”

Poor Matheesha was reduced to a mere spectator as Hasham threw a flurry of bingos while cleverly challenging off all invalid words that Matheesha tried in a desperate attempt the reduce the deficit.

Around 80 of the world’s best players were witness of the spectacular show of vocabulary and tactical skills by a nine-year-old who is hailed as the next big sensation in scrabble.

Reigning world champ Nigel Richards personally congratulated Hasham on his record while modestly mentioning that he himself has never gone past a score of 700 in a major event.

Hasham playing his first ever international tournament will represent Pakistan at the World Youth Scrabble Championship which starts Aug 29.

Meanwhile, day two of the 6th Sri Lanka International Scrabble Championship was dominated by a New Zea­lander but it wasn’t the world champion Nigel Rich­ards but his compatriot Howard Warner, who is on top with 15 wins and a spread of 1,223.

India’s number one player Sherwin Rodrigues is curre­ntly second with 14 wins and a spread of 1,261.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1127312/pakistans-hasham-creates-history-in-sl

Riaz Haq said...

Aggregate indices like UNDP's Human Development Index (HDI) or the Center for Global Development (CGD) and Foreign Policy (FP)'s Commitment to Development Index (CDI) are becoming commonplace. This reflects the usefulness of simple numerical measures of performance for advocacy, for analysis, and for straightforward,
non-technical comparisons. At the same time, these indices are open to many criticisms ranging from concerns with the underlying data to questions regarding the weights used to construct the aggregate indices from their constituent components. This paper addresses two concerns linked to the weights used to construct these two indices and develops alternative weighting schemes.

Both the HDI and the CDI apply a very simple weighting scheme: equal weights for each component. This is obviously convenient but also universally considered to be wrong. The ideal approach would presumably involve using as eights the impact of each component on the ultimate objective. For the HDI, this means that each of the
components should receive weights according to its contribution to human development, and for the CDI, it means that each of the components should receive weights according to its contribution to the development of developing countries. This is theoretically
correct but obviously infeasible given the present state of knowledge. The first question
addressed in this paper, therefore, is whether there is an intermediate solution. In this
context, intermediate means a solution that lies somewhere between equal weights and
the ideal; and somewhere between convenient and infeasible.

http://www.cgdev.org/doc/event%20docs/10.23.03%20GDN%20Conf/Chowdhury%20and%20Squire%20-%20Setting%20Weights%20for%20Aggregate%20Indices.pdf

Riaz Haq said...

India's lost generation: A systemic risk?

Singaporean Thomas Ong, a director at a local private equity firm, recently got invited as a guest lecturer at a private college in Jaipur, India. "I had heard stories about India's young people with 'excellent academic and English speaking skills' but what I encountered was the complete opposite," he said.

Not one student in a class of 100 has ever heard of Bill Gates or Warren Buffet. Most students could not understand, let alone speak fluent English. "The only question they had at the end the lecture was how to find a job at home or abroad," Ong said.

His account is anecdotal evidence of what human resource experts, corporate leaders and countless surveys have been highlighting over the past few years - that despite India's huge talent pool of graduates, few are equipped with skills to be gainfully employed.


According to a survey conducted by Aspiring Minds, an entrepreneurial initiative in preparing youth for employability, as many as 83 percent of graduating engineers in 2013 could not find jobs, given their poor English language and cognitive skills.

In fact, only 2.6 percent of graduates in India were recruited in functional roles like accounting, 15.9 percent in sales-related roles and 21.3 percent in the business process outsourcing sector. "Nearly 47 percent of Indian graduates are unemployable in any sector, irrespective of their academic degrees," noted Varun Aggarwal, co-founder and COO of Aspiring Minds.

The statistics run counter to the perception that India's relatively youthful population could help reap demographic dividends for the country down the line.
----------
For India however, the reality on the ground couldn't be more different. "It is not unusual to see graduates employed as security guards, driver or waiters in restaurants, given the poor standards of education. So what demographic dividend are we talking of? The generation coming of age in the 1920s faces the greatest underemployment ever in history," said Anil Sachdev, a human resources specialist and career coach.

The fault appears to lie in the dismal education standards in India. As little as 10- 12 percent of the 15-29 year-old age group in India receives any formal or informal training compared with to 28 percent in Mexico or 96 percent in South Korea.

For tertiary education, none of the 42 central universities in India feature in the most recent QS list of best 200 colleges in the world. In the rankings of the best MBA schools by the Financial Times, the prestigious Indian School of Business has fallen six places to the 36th spot this year and Indian names are conspicuously missing in the top 25 places.

Analysts say a lack of occupational focus in the degrees offered by local universities could be partly to blame. Some 82 percent of the enrolment is in arts, sciences and commerce programs rather than specific skill-based courses. Even among the engineering and management colleges, less than 25 percent can apply theoretical knowledge to functional areas, given the emphasis on rote learning and theory in the education system, says Aggarwal. The situation progressively deteriorates moving into the tier 2-3 towns from the metros.


"Excessive government regulation, outmoded curricula and a drop in the standards of teaching have led to a deterioration in the standards of education so much so that India's demographic dividend may well turn out to be a demographic disaster," said Pramath Sinha, co-founder of the new-age Ashoka University and ex-dean of Indian School of Business, the country's first public private initiative to bridge jobs and employability gap.


http://finance.yahoo.com/news/indias-lost-generation-systemic-risk-223155178.html

Riaz Haq said...

Why Indian education sucks:
10. Changes way too often.
changes way to often
The school system of SSC board has changed so very often. Starting with total suspension of exams till 8th grade, moving to grading system from marking system, changing the mid-term exams from twice a year to eight times a year, introducing orals and internals in the boards, the changes are frequent and unpredictable. ...

9. Just eat it and puke.
just eat and puke
The entire Indian educated student will agree that the ‘learning’ is different from its definition. When we were told to learn it does not understand the content it is mugging it, memorizing it and writing it down verbatim. The prowess of the learned content is fearsome for the poems and stories of past are still embedded in our minds forever. The horror of forgetting one word in the answer, the danger of deviating from the answers was life-threatening. ...
8. no practical experiences
The actual implementation of techniques learned right from school through grad school is practically absent. The techniques we learn are bookish knowledge. The charts we make as projects have little or no significant relation with the education process. The Grad school experience of engineering starts with diagrammatic representation of gramophone and ends with advanced technical drawings. We are too rigid to enter into the real world. And the substantial time we waste into the drawings is something we need to divert into practicality. Life will be easier then.
7. Pit us against each other.
pit us against each other
From an early age, we are taught that there is only one and one winner alone. We fight for that top slot in class, the trophy, the race, the position of the leader, best sportsman and everything. We befriend people based on the ranks and grades. This instinct continues into our college days, our bachelor’s degree and further into our lives. Sportsmanship is not a strong suit taught in the education institutes for we are only taught to run the race to bet others not to win.
6. No unity in this diversity.
No unity in diversity

The Indian scenario plays an important role in our education culture. Few districts and states are notoriously famous for their tolerance of the cheating, proxies and free degrees. The system is degraded and this leads too many feeling cheated of fair competition. The paper checking method is laughable. The environments of private schools and colleges are closed to government watches giving them excess liberty. We learn politics right from school just by experience, ignorance protects us.
4. Sports are absent.
sports are absent
Apart from few schools where sports actually mean something, majority of schools uses the P.E lecture to conduct few games. The seriousness of this slot in school timetable is negligible....
3. Technology deficient.
technology deficient
We are taught the computer in 3rd grade around. We learn basic languages which are practically off the market. The syllabus of computers was something we barely made through. The course included techniques so old that it is practically obsolete in this day and time. The comparison with western country will put us to shame. The kids there are in sync with technology from age of 3. We need to step up our games. We still write every single word and submit the papers . At-least the Grad and PG level demands the use of computers and laptops in the everyday classes. We need to start refusing papers and start going digital.The world is going digital and we are being left behind. Indian Education system needs to incorporate these changes in its system and fast!
2. English Please.
English please
Studies show that even the engineers can’t spell out properly. They are weak in Basic English and this is after clearing four year grad school in the same language.

1. Just study

How many of us have given up on arts and crafts and dance and sports due to education and board exams.

http://listcrown.com/10-reasons-indian-education-system-sucks/

the rationalist said...

After reading this article, it seems to me india is far ahead of pakistan in the field of education. But I don't expect the author to understand why.

Riaz Haq said...

Cheating in school tests is an old Indian problem.

But the malpractice literally scaled new heights this week in the eastern state of Bihar when relatives of 10th-grade students climbed the wall of a school building and perched precariously from windows of classrooms as they handed cheat sheets to children writing the tests inside.

Photographs and videos showing parents, friends and others scaling the school wall — Spiderman-style — went viral in India on Thursday. Police officers standing nearby watched helplessly.

Cheating is common in schools in remote rural areas in India, where jobs and seats in college courses are few but competition is fierce. But the sight of parents risking their life and limbs to climb the walls shocked many Indians.

Under Bihar’s anti-cheating law, dozens of 12th-grade students were expelled and their parents detained last month in cases of cheating in tests.

Many students in India drop out of school because they fail to pass the tough standardized tests in their 10th and 12th grades.

Education experts say that cheating is just a symptom of the deeper problems that plague India's education system, such as teacher absenteeism, emphasis on rote learning and inadequate school infrastructure.

A recent study by the Pratham Education Foundation showed that only 48 percent of fifth-grade students could read a second-grade textbook.

“According to the reports we received, there have been complaints about cheating in many places, especially in rural areas,” P.K. Sahi, education minister of Bihar, told reporters on Thursday. “Is this just the responsibility of the government? Is it possible for the government to conduct fair tests without public support? You tell us what can the government do to stop cheating if parents and relatives are not ready to cooperate?”

Authorities expelled nearly 500 students from the tests, according to local media reports.

#India parents climbed a school wall to help their kids cheat on an exam http://wpo.st/_fZ90

Riaz Haq said...

Finally, #India will produce fewer lousy, incapable engineers every year http://qz.com/506579 via @qzindia

India’s epidemic of lousy engineering colleges, which churned out millions of substandard engineers, may finally be ending.
The country’s technical education regulator, All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), is planning to reduce over 600,000 engineering seats in colleges across India.
“We would like to bring it (engineering seats) down to between 10 lakh and 11 lakh (one million and 1.1 million) from a little over 16.7 lakh now,” Anil Sahasrabudhe, chairman of the AICTE, told the Mint newspaper.
The dismal quality of education at many of the country’s existing engineering colleges is one of the main reasons behind AICTE’s decision. The regulatory body plans to close down certain colleges and reduce the number seats in some others over the next few years.

“It is the colleges that are coming forward for closure. We are facilitating closure if the colleges are not able to manage with hardly 20-30% seats filled because these colleges become non-viable,” Sahasrabudhe told Quartz in an email.
This year alone, about 556 engineering courses or departments across colleges in India have closed down, according to AICTE.
The rise and fall of engineering

Engineering has been one of the most sought after professions in Asia’s third largest economy, where more than a million engineers graduate every year. India saw a boom in technical education after it opened up its economy in 1991, which allowed the IT sector to thrive.
The mid-1990s saw a huge spike in the number of engineering graduates, as the demand for them increased in sectors ranging from IT to infrastructure.

The phenomenal rise in engineering degrees also lead to a boom in the technical education sector with private colleges mushrooming all across the country. In the 2015 financial year, India had 3,389 graduate engineering colleges (pdf).
But the quality of engineering graduates in India is woeful. In fact, in 2011, Nasscom, the trade association of IT and business processing units, had estimated that only 25% of India’s IT engineering graduates were actually employable.
The result is that many graduates can’t find employment after earning their degrees. Last year, a study by Aspiring Minds (pdf), a firm that rates and evaluates employment, said that only 18.43% of the total engineers who graduate every year are employable in the IT sector. Only 7.49% are employable in core engineering jobs like mechanical, electronics and civil engineering.
Leading companies in technology and other sectors prefer to hire students only from a handful of engineering schools such as the the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), National Institutes of Technology (NITs) and some private institutions.

Riaz Haq said...

#Vietnam's high PISA scores cause a stir. #Vietnames kids rank near top; #India kids at bottom on PISA tests http://www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opinion/753840/vietnam-high-pisa-scores-cause-a-stir …

Vietnam's performance in the latest round of the Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa) has created a stir among education experts and policymakers around the world. The country's 15-year...

When compared to student performance in India, a country with similar per capita GDP, 47% of grade 5 pupils were unable to subtract even two-digit numbers.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:http://www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opinion/753840/vietnam-high-pisa-scores-cause-a-stir. View our policies at http://goo.gl/9HgTd and http://goo.gl/ou6Ip. © Post Publishing PCL. All rights reserved.

Riaz Haq said...

#Pakistan School Enrollment Rising But #Education Quality Remains Unacceptable: ASER 2015 Report http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/?p=472641 via @ePakistanToday

In 2015, 20 per cent of children were reported to be out-of-school. That number has decreased as compared to previous year, which had over 21 per cent children out-of-school.

Only 49 per cent of boys in grade five were able to do grade two level subtraction as compared to 41 per cent of girls in grade five.
2015 saw a six per cent rise in the number of children enrolled in public schools, as compared to 2014

Some 76 per cent children between the ages of six and 16 were enrolled in public schools in 2015, while last year the number was 70 per cent.

According to the report, student competencies in learning English, arithmetic, and language have also improved.

The ASER Survey also has identified that boys are outperforming girls in literacy and numeric skills in rural Pakistan. As many as 49 per cent of boys were able to read at least a few sentences in Urdu/Sindhi/Pashto as compared to 42 per cent of the girls.

For Arithmetic, 49 per cent of Class-V boys were able to do second grade level subtraction as compared to only 41 per cent Class V girls.

In addition to the assessment of children, the report also highlights school functioning across every district in Pakistan. The ASER rural survey informs that overall teachers’ attendance in government schools stood at 89 per cent as compared to 91 per cent in private schools on the day of the survey.

The reverse is the case for MA/MSC or postgraduate qualifications, whereby larger percentage of public sector teachers has a higher qualification than private sector counterparts.

The trends in multi-grade teaching across schools are also mixed. ASER 2015 National rural findings have found 49 per cent of government and 29 per cent of private schools are imparting multi-grade teaching at the second grade level. On the contrary, at the eighth grade level, multi-grade teaching is more prevalent in the private sector at 24 per cent as compared to 16 per cent in government schools.

Despite of the fact that only two per cent private primary schools receive funds from the government (as compared to 29 per cent public primary schools), the private sector has been reported to be better at school facilities.

For example, 65 per cent of private primary schools have boundary-walls as compared to 63 per cent government primary schools. Similarly, about the availability of functional toilets, it has been found that the facility was still not available in 48 per cent public and 22 per cent private primary schools in rural Pakistan.

ASER has undoubtedly played a unique role in informing the public, inspiring a national discourse and initiate demand for policy and action leading to a transformation from the bottom-up.

Riaz Haq said...

#India's population explosion will make or break its economy. Not enough jobs and huge skills gap #BJP http://cnnmon.ie/1V1p0FL via @CNNMoney

unless India makes big improvements in how it educates and trains students, this demographic boom could instead saddle the country with another generation of unskilled workers destined to languish in low-paying jobs.
The need to train workers up -- and quickly -- is paramount. Currently only 2% of India's workers have received formal skills training, according to Ernst & Young. That compares with 68% in the U.K., 75% in Germany and 96% in South Korea.
It's a problem spread across industries. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors estimates that in 2010, India needed nearly 4 million civil engineers, but only 509,000 professionals had the right skills for the jobs. By 2020, India will have only 778,000 civil engineers for 4.6 million slots.
There is a similar gap among architects. India will have only 17% of the 427,000 professionals it needs in 2020.

The problem? The RICS found that India's education and professional development system has not kept pace with economic growth and is in "dire need for reform."
In industry after industry, the same story is repeated. A recent survey by Aspiring Minds, which tracks workforce preparedness, found that more than 80% of India's engineering graduates in 2015 were "unemployable."
"The quality of training offered in most colleges is not at par with the high demands generated by tech industries," said Preet Rustagi, a labor economist at the Institute for Human Development. "There is no regulatory body that keep checks on the quality of education."

Critics say India's universities are too focused on rote memorization, leaving students without the critical thinking skills required to solve problems. Teachers are paid low salaries, leading to poor quality of instruction. When students are denied entry to prestigious state schools, they often turn to less rigorous private colleges.
"When IT industries boomed in India a few years ago, many below-the-mark private colleges emerged to cater to their needs," said Alakh N. Sharma, director at the Institute for Human Development.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is racing to provide workers with training. His government is recruiting skills instructors, and turning old schools into learning centers. Programs strewn across various government agencies are being consolidated. Companies in the private sector are pitching in to help provide training.
The most pressing need, however, might be in primary education. Pupils in India are expected to perform two-digit subtraction by the age of seven, but only 50% are able to correctly count up to 100. Only 30% of the same students are able to read a text designed for five-year-olds, according to education foundation Pathram.
If the country's unique demographics are to pay dividends, improvement is a lesson to be learned quickly.

Riaz Haq said...

#India-Occupied #Kashmir behind Azad Kashmi in education ranking. http://www.greaterkashmir.com/news/kashmir/jk-behind-azad-kashmir-in-education-ranking/186081.html … via @sharethis

Jammu and Kashmir has figured among worst performing states in elementary education in India while ‘Azad Kashmir’ across the Line of Control in Pakistan is leading in the same, two separate surveys have revealed.
According to a latest round of the National Performance Survey conducted by the National Council of Education Research and Training (NCERT), the percentage of students “able to listen, recognize words and read with comprehension in Jammu and Kashmir is lower than the national average.”

Against the national average score of 257 (on a scale of 0 to 500), the students in J&K scored just 232 in language subject. Similarly for mathematics, J&K scored 240 as against the national average of 252.
In language, the state is third worst performing state, triumphing only over Bihar and Chhattisgarh. Here, the students were able to answer just 56 percent of language questions correctly as against the national average of 64 percent. The top position went to Daman and Diu with a score of 74 percentile.
In the sub-category of Listening under Language, the state is at the bottom of all states as only 49 percent of Class III students were able to listen to a passage with understanding. Furthermore the average score of boys is lower than the girls in the state.

In Mathematics, J&K is tied up with Rajasthan as fourth worst performing state. In both the states, the students were able to answer just 61 percent of mathematics questions correctly. In all the abilities like addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, place value and shapes category, the state score was lower than the national average. The girls scored slightly better than the boys in the state.

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Under the Provincial and National Education Scores (Primary School), AJK has jumped to second position just behind the top ranked Islamabad. AJK has a score of 76.67 as against the Pakistani average of 70.33. All AJK districts have a high education score between 70 and 79.
Gilgit Baltistan (GB) comes fourth just after Punjab with a score of 73.78. The rankings in primary school sector are a lead by Punjab, AJK and GB. The middle school rankings, however, are completely dominated by AJK, which has six districts in the top 10.
“Bhimber (AJK) replaces Skardu as top district from last year. Overall, districts from AJK occupy four of the top five ranks,” the report says.
“Throughout the period we have been calculating the Alif Ailaan district education rankings, AJK has continued to perform well on the education score for primary schooling. This is the same in 2015,” the report said in its observation. The report also paints positive image for GB. “Despite poor performance on the school infrastructure score, GB districts continue to score well on the education rankings. GB is the only region in the country where none of the districts score lower than 50 on the learning score,” the report says.
Surprisingly the good performance comes despite the fact that educational infrastructure in AJK and GB is one of the worst in entire Pakistan.
AJK is at the bottom of the infrastructure ranking among all provinces. Less than 50 percent of 50% of schools in AJK can provide functional toilets, water or electricity.