Education in India

Indian Education system

Education in India. Education is an important feature of life.  ‘Literacy rate’ is a common measure used to measure and compare how educated are citizens in a country or a state or city.  India’s literacy rate was at appalling 12% in 1947 when India got its Independence.  India has made significant progress in the field of education over the last few decades and the current literacy rate stands at 74% with many states attaining more than 90% literacy rate.  This progress was made possible through many schemes of Govt specifically targeting the kids in rural areas and economically weaker sections through schemes such as mid day meal, free education up to class 7 (up to age of 12), no detention till class 8 (up to age 13) etc. 

One of the important features of Indian education system is ‘reservations’.  Reservation is based on physical ability, economic status, caste etc.  Certain percent of seats are reserved for the above sections in all educational institutes.  Also the fee for the reserved categories is discounted.  Reservations are a very popular political means to attract votes and there is always immense pressure to add more castes/ creeds into these reserved categories.  Sensing the danger, Supreme Court of India has capped that reservations cannot exceed 50% in aggregate

Education in India

Education Pattern in India

Like many countries, In India the education system is divided into public and private. The funding or grants for each sector depends on central, state and the local bodies. The fee in public schools is generally lower than private schools.  The quality of education also differs from public to private schools. In India both central and state boards follow the pattern of 10 + 2 + 3 pattern of education.

Pre- Primary - It consists of the age group of 3-5 years. The main aim of this level is to make children to come out of home and enjoy the beginning of education. It is divided into nursery, lower kindergarten (LKG) and upper kindergarten (UKG). At this stage kids are taught to know the basic alphabets and some reading.

Primary - It includes the age group of children of 6-11 years studying in classes from first to fifth. By the time children come to this stage they would have started accustomed to the school and would have some knowledge of alphabets and few sentences. Children would also be interested in learning maths and different body parts of human beings. The Indian government lays emphasis on the primary education. It lays foundation for further higher studies. Government has announced that no child should be detained in primary education.

Middle – It includes the age group of children of 12-14 years studying in classes from 6 to 8. As one climbs the ladder the system of education also become tougher and interesting. Regular exams are conducted to know the development of each child. Based on his/ her performance grades are given and lesser grade child would be given special attention to improve his grades.  This age group of education sets a good base in Maths and science for higher education.

Secondary – It includes the age group of children of 15-16years studying in class 9 and 10. With adolescent creeping in the burden of studies also increases. The career of the child depends on how well he/she bears the pressure and handles it with confidence. In class 9, science is further divided into physics, chemistry and Biology. Maths becomes in depth in arithmetic, algebra and geometry. These two years are crucial to decide the path in which a student’s decide to choose his career. It can be science, commerce or arts.

Higher Secondary - It includes students studying in class 11 and 12. In state board run schools it is called as PUC after 10th. Students choose the stream after completing class 10. Based on the percentage scored in class10 and interest of the student they can choose Commerce, Science, Arts in class 11 or PUC. A commerce student usually takes the stream of charted accountant or company sectary. Science students can choose either medical or engineering depending upon the subjects opted in class 11 and 12. The student who has chosen biology can choose for engineering or medical.

Graduate - Here, a student goes through higher education, which is completed in college. This course may vary according to the subject pursued by the student. For medical student this stage is of four and a half years plus one year of compulsory internship, while a simple graduate degree can be attained in three years. Engineering takes four years while a law graduate studies for 5years.

Postgraduate - After completing graduation a student may opt for post graduation to further add to his qualifications. Depending upon stream taken a student decides to further add cap in his field to improve his career.

The pattern of examination up to 10th is same all over India in Central board. Students are graded based on his/her performance throughout the year in school. Marks are divided so that the children doesn’t have to  bear the pressure. Marks are awarded for the behaviour of the child in the class. The grading system includes A1, A2, b1 and 2 and further. Students who scores between 91-100 is considered as A1 grade in that particular subject. From 81-100 it is considered as A2 grade and the same way from 71-80 is considered as B1 and 61-70 it is considered as B2. Students who score less than B grade are given special attention and are given extra classes to improve their grades.

Different Boards of education in India

Different Boards in Indian Education system

The first 10 year is further divided into two parts viz primary school (first seven year, class 1 to 7) high school (last 3years, class 8 to 10)

In India schools offer both Indian and international syllabi.  There are different boards/ institutes responsible for the schooling as below:

  1. CBSE: Central Board of Secondary Education
  2. State Board: State Government Recognized Board.
  3. IGCSE: International General Certificate of Secondary Education, Cambridge University
  4. CISCE: Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations
  5. IB:  International Baccalaureate

CBSE is the most preferred board by parents with transferable jobs, which was set up in 1962. The pattern of education in India from class 1 till 10 is continuous comprehensive education.  System of marks was discontinued recently and a grading system was introduced to reduce the stress on children. CBSE conducts exams for class 10 and class 12 only and for rest of the classes the exams are conducted by the schools themselves.  This curriculum is most suited for the kids who have potential chances of moving from one state in India to another state in India due to the movement of their parents as the curriculum presents national perspective. All schools through out India that follow this curriculum are governed from Delhi.  

State Board Each state have their own board recognised by the Indian Government. The exams are conducted at primary, secondary and at higher levels.  Board exams are conducted for class 10 and class 12 (which is called as 2nd PUC – pre university college).  This curriculum is most suited for the kids who are not expected to move out of their state in India to another state in India due to the job (mostly in state govt jobs) or occupation (in business) of their parents.  All schools that follow this curriculum are governed from the capital of each state in India. 

CISCE Council for the Indian School certificate examinations was set up in the year 1958. CISCE is a private nongovernmental organisations that conducts examination of Indian Certificate of Secondary Education(ICSE), The Indian School Certificate  (ISC) for class 10 and 12 respectively.  Even they conduct board exams for class 10 and 12. The syllabus is vast but focus is on practical and analytical skills.  This curriculum is most suited for the kids who have potential chances of moving in the Middle East and South Asian region due to the movement of their parents the curriculum presents an international perspective.  CISCE schools are available in Dubai – Sharjah – India – Indonesia – Singapore.  All schools that follow this curriculum are governed from Delhi.  

International Bacceleurate Previously known as International Bacceleurate Organisation was established in the year 1968.  The board offers programmes at 3 different levels for different age category.  PYP or primary education programme for Kindergarten to class 5, middle year programme for class 5 to 10 and diploma programme for class 11 and 12 .  This curriculum is most suited for the kids who have potential chances of moving from one continent to another due to the movement of their parents the curriculum presents an international perspective. All schools that follow this curriculum are governed from Geneva. 

Distance education in India:

Students who cannot go to colleges can complete their graduation and post graduation through distance mode. Most of the fields like Law, science, arts and commerce degree can be completed from these colleges. Some of the important university/ institutions are:

  1. Indira Gandhi open university, New Delhi
  2. Yashwanthrao C Maharashtra open university, Nashik
  3. Sikkim Manipal open university, Gangtok