A model for quality and inclusive education

Source– The post is based on the article “A model for quality and inclusive education” published in “The Hindu” on 28th June 2023.

Syllabus: GS2- Issues related to development and management of education

News– The National Institutional Ranking Framework, adopted by the Ministry of Education to rank institutions of higher education in India reveals the consistent success of Tamil Nadu in providing higher education.

What are some facts about NIRF?

The NIRF employs a ranking metric comprising five parameters with varying weightage to assess the quality of colleges.

These parameters are Teaching- (1) Learning and Resources Graduation Outcome, (2) Research and Professional Practices, (3) Outreach and Inclusivity and (4) Perception.

Each of these parameters has several components, which again have varying weightage.

The number of colleges participating in the NIRF ranking has grown from 535 in 2017 to 2,746 in 2023.

NIRF ranking has already gained wide traction and credibility. Many good-quality colleges participate in the exercise. A place in the top 100 would bring them repute and increase demand for admission.

What is the performance of the state as per NIRF-ranking of 2023?

Of the top 100 NIRF-ranked colleges in 2023, Tamil Nadu has the largest share (35). Delhi (32) comes next, followed by Kerala (14) and West Bengal (8). These four States collectively contribute to 89% of the top colleges.

Bigger States such as Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Odisha do not have a single college in the top 100.

Is the performance of Tamil Nadu in congruence with its motto of development with social justice?

Chennai accounts for only nine colleges. Coimbatore competes with Chennai. Tiruchirappalli, with five colleges is next. The remaining 12 colleges are widely spread across 11 places. So, there are no wider regional disparities.

The largest beneficiaries from Chennai, Coimbatore, and Tiruchirappalli are likely to be urban dwellers.

Yet, the top-ranked colleges from these cities are serving the poor and disadvantaged social groups. This is because Tamil Nadu has one of the highest reservation quotas. It has been quite effective in its implementation of the reservation policy.

More than one-third of the top-ranked colleges are dispersed across places. They provide an opportunity for quality education for students who do not have the economic resources and social networks to study in colleges from Chennai, Coimbatore, and Tiruchirappalli.

What are lessons from Tamil Nadu success in prodigy quality higher education?

Tamil Nadu’s impressive and consistent performance in higher education shows that quality and inclusion can be achieved together and consistently.

It should prompt other southern States, having a reasonably inclusive and effective social welfare architecture, to introspect why they lag far behind. It should inspire them to take action to rectify issues.

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