Citizens' Issues
80 percent of education expenditure spent on teachers

India is short of teachers compared to other BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) nations, which have done far better at imparting literacy

 

Up to 80 percent of India’s public expenditure on education is spent on teachers–salaries, training and learning material, according to a new six-state report.
 
Yet, the quality of learning at Indian schools is falling, as IndiaSpend has reported, and India is short of teachers compared to other BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) nations, which have done far better at imparting literacy.
 
This is how India’s education money is being spent, according to the PAISA 2015 Seminar (PAISA- Planning, Allocations and Expenditures, Institutions: Studies in Accountability), organised by the Accountability Initiative, a think tank: teachers - 80 percent, children/management/school - five percent each.
 
Despite 80 percent of Rs.5,86,085 crore ($94 billion) over 10 years going towards teachers and their training in the six states, learning outcomes are still worsening, making it clear that India is experiencing a major policy failure.
 
Although physical infrastructure has grown, teachers play an important role, but as the case of Maharashtra indicates, if more than 90 percent of primary teachers fail evaluation tests, recruitment and training policies are flawed.
 
An Indian state’s wealth is not linked to better education. Indeed, higher the per capita income, lower the public expenditure on elementary education (as a proportion of the state’s GDP), according to the PAISA study.
 
Another finding was that in both private and public schools, high spending did not guarantee better learning, although it did appear to be a factor.
 
The data does show that learning outcomes are better in private education, even if government expenditure per child is higher.
 
One crude fact about India’s education sector is that 282 million Indians are illiterate. Government policies ensured universal primary enrolment, but by the higher secondary level, enrolment drops to 52.2 percent.
 
This means a little more than half the population of that age will get a higher secondary education.
 
One indicator that can be used to look at enrolment at each level of education is the gross enrolment ratio (GER). According to UNESCO, GER is the total enrolment in a specific level of education, regardless of age, expressed as a percentage of the eligible official school-age population, corresponding to the same level of education in a given school-year. (If there is late or early enrolment, or repetition of a grade, total enrolment can exceed the population of the age group that officially corresponds to the level of education, leading to ratios greater than 100 percent.) 
 
In our pre-budget analysis of the education sector and government spending, we found a relation between higher spending and better literacy rates among various countries.
 
With a literacy rate of 77 percent, India lagged all the other BRICS nations, which have literacy rates above 90 percent. All these countries have better student-teacher ratios.
 
So, on the one hand, India grapples with poor quality of teachers, and on the other, has fewer teachers in comparison with countries that do a better job at education.
 
As Indiaspend has previously noted, policy towards better learning outcomes needs to ensure better retention rates and more teachers.

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COMMENTS

SuchindranathAiyerS

2 years ago

"Cost disease". This is true of every arm and aspect of Indian Governance. What is missing is quality and essential resources

Agra woman takes on SP leader

The woman was on her way to see a doctor on Sunday when local Samajwadi Party leader Abhinav Sharma's car grazed past her vehicle, knocking her down

 

A young woman took on a Samajwadi Party leader here when his motorcade brushed past her two-wheeler and one of the guards, she claimed, winked at her.
 
The woman was on her way to see a doctor on Sunday when local Samajwadi Party leader Abhinav Sharma's car grazed past her vehicle, knocking her down. 
 
Sharma had lost the 2012 assembly polls and runs a public school in Agra.
 
According to the woman, one of the guards in the car passed lewd comments and winked at her. Another snatched her mobile phone and threw it on the ground as she took pictures of them.
 
Infuriated, the woman climbed on to Sharma's car, plucked out the party flag from the bonnet and smashed the car's windshield, videos which went viral on Monday showed. Hundreds of people cheered her. 
 
The fracas stunned the politician -- and his guards.
 
The high-pitched drama continued for nearly an hour as the crowd shouted slogans and blocked the traffic. Police had to intervene.
 
After the woman refused to go to the police station to file a complaint, a deal was brokered. Sharma reportedly paid for her damaged mobile phone and offered an apology, informed sources said.
 
Police officer Swatantra Kumar said it was not a case of harassment but a dispute over not giving side.
 

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Facebook may allow businesses to use WhatsApp
Facebook might soon allow businesses to interact with users of popular messaging service WhatsApp.
 
"We think that enabling that B2C (business-to-consumer) messaging has good business potential for us," Facebook chief financial officer David Wehner was reported as saying by Mashable.
 
"As we learn those things, I think there's going to be opportunities to bring some of those things to WhatsApp, but that's more longer term," Wehner said at a tech conference in Boston recently.
 
Facebook purchased WhatsApp for $21.8 billion last year. With 800 million users now, WhatsApp has grown rapidly since 2009, particularly in Europe and parts of Asia.
 
But profit remains elusive for WhatsApp. In October, Facebook disclosed that WhatsApp made nearly $16 million in revenues during the first half of 2014 but lost $232 million during the same period, mostly from stock-related expenses.
 
The situation looked pretty similar for 2013, when the company generated $10.2 million in revenues for the year but lost $138 million, also from stock-related expenses.
 
Given that history, it makes sense for Facebook to consider a B2C feature for WhatsApp, where it charges businesses for access to users. The service obviously has huge global reach, and Facebook already has some businesses, including Everlane and Zulily, engaging with customers via Messenger.
 
WhatsApp has so far largely stayed away from advertising and games which could rake in some moolah for it.
 
Meanwhile, Mark Zuckerberg has said he is in no rush to transform services like WhatsApp into businesses until they hit one billion users. The news is, WhatsApp could hit that milestone by end of 2015.

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