Learning level takes a dip in Himachal
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Once rated high on the literacy front, almost next to Kerala, Himachal Pradesh has taken a sharp dip in the learning levels setting the alarm bells for the new Congress government.
Annual Status of Education Report-2012 (ASER) for Himachal Pradesh, released here by Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh reveals startling facts. It shows that the class V students, who could read class II level test, had gone down from 82.3 per cent in 2007 to 72.8 per cent in 2012. In the same period, the percentage of students in Class V, who could solve three digit problems, declined from 66.9 per cent to 48.7 per cent.
Chief Minister expressed concern over the decline in the learning level of students at elementary stage and asked the state's education department to put in place a comprehensive plan to address the situation. This could include systematic and regular assessment of learning level of all the students. The schools would be graded on the basis of performance and grading would gradually be linked to monetary and non-monetary incentives to the schools, he added.
The CM directed the education department to prepare a detailed action plan by march 2013 outlining immediate measures for 2013-14 and a long term perspective plan to arrest the decline and to improve the situation. He said that each child studying in class I to VIII would be assessed against benchmarked attainment levels after every four months by the education department which would help in tracking the progress of each child and remedial action would also be taken accordingly.
He further added that to improve academic support to school, the government would appoint state project offices of Srav Shiksha Abhiyan and for other literacy programmes.
Less than 2% get an A-grade
Out of the 13,777 who took the test, only 231 (2 per cent) got A Grade (80-100 per cent) in Hindi and only 21 students got A Grade in English. While only 24 students got A Grade in Mathematics, the number was only 13 in EVS. A majority failed to get more than 34 per cent marks in the test. The failure rate (and these are the brightest students in Class VI) is as follows: Hindi (boys: 60 per cent, girls: 53 per cent), English (boys: 92 per cent, girls: 89 per cent), Mathematics (boys: 92 per cent , girls: 94 per cent) and EVS (boys: 94 per cent and girls: 96 per cent).Even 80 per cent of the teachers, who appeared in teachers' eligibility test, failed, says the report.
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