What is the News?
A Survey named School Children’s Online and Offline Learning(SCHOOL) was conducted to understand the impact of the prolonged closure of schools due to the pandemic.
About the Survey SCHOOL
The survey was conducted in 15 states and Union Territories(UTs). It focused on relatively deprived hamlets and ‘bastis’(slums), where children generally attend government schools.
Four states — Delhi, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh — accounted for half of the sample.
What are the findings of the Survey?
Students Studying Online: Around 37% of the sample students were not studying at all. On the other hand, only 19% in urban areas and 8% in rural areas were studying online regularly.
Reasons for Limited reach of online classes: Many sample households (about half in rural areas) have no smartphone. But even among households with a smartphone, the proportion of children who are studying online regularly is just 31% in urban areas and 15% in rural areas.
Impact of Limited Access to Online Classes: Due to limited access to online classes, 48% of the surveyed poor children in rural areas weren’t able to read more than a few words while in urban areas, the figure was at 42%.
Shift from Private to Government Schools: Around 26% of the households had switched from private to government schools for lack of funds, while mid-day meals had been discontinued in all sample schools.
Marginalised communities were the worst affected. For instance, only 4% of rural scheduled caste and tribe children were studying online regularly compared with 15% among other rural children.
Parents on Online Education: Around 75% of parents feel their child’s reading ability has massively declined and almost all of them want physical classrooms to open immediately.
Source: This post is based on the following articles
- “Survey: 37% poor rural students not studying at all” published in TOI on 7th September 2021.
- “75% kids see literacy loss as most schools remain shut, says survey” published in Business Standard on 7th September 2021.