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How to improve quality of primary education in the government sector?
Despite various conferences, seminars and symposia on quality of primary education in the government sector and recommendations emerging thereof, the primary schools are either being shutdown in rural areas or they are going for public-private partnership mode for their survival.

In the last two decades, with emphasis on access to elementary education and enrollment campaigns, the number and diversity of children in government schools and those from the marginalized groups coming to the schools have increased. Also, children from certain castes and slightly better-off families are being withdrawn from the government schools in favour of private schools due to the former's poor performance.

The government schools have become low quality educational centres for the children from poor and deprived families and girls.

Furthermore, the children of most government school teachers and higher level educational functionaries are studying in private schools and they seem to have no stake in government schools since their own children are not affected by poor performance of these schools whose cause they are suppose to serve. The quality improvement efforts by such personnel, who do not have a stake in the system, are being seen as a farce by many concerned people.

I think that for building quality, two things are necessary. First, there should be space for innovations, tryouts, flexibility and freedom to make mistakes and learn from them. Secondly, there is a need for relaxing norms and standards for resources and performance accountability.

Since teachers are central to any educational reform or quality improvement in education and their motivation and leadership needs to be built through in service training and follow-up. The professional excitement, energy and enthusiasm among teachers need to be fostered by the management. In education, quality means the quality teachers whose performance is reflected in the classroom processes. Even display of students' work in the classroom enlivens it.

Unfortunately, the enrollment drives of last few decades were de-linked to the quality and teacher development with a proper support system. The road roller methods of bringing children to schools and emphasis on statistics have robbed off the teacher enthusiasm and sensitivity for classroom instruction.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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