The 2016-17 Economic Survey of India puts the crux of the problem of education in a succinct manner in their report. The summary below points towards the two primary problems of the education sector and suggests a few remedies to improve the system.
Problem 1: Low learning outcomes
We often hear of people having a matriculation or graduation degree, yet unable to deal with basic problems presented to them. This is a consequence of low learning outcomes. This is a pertinent concern that is often heard in the discourse of school education. The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER), 2014, and several other studies have repeatedly pointed this out. While improvements in access to education and retention in school have been mapped in these reports, the learning outcomes for a majority of children are still very low.
Problem 2: Teacher absenteeism and poor quality of teachers
It is understood that the main cause of this low learning outcomes is disinterested and absent teachers. This sizable contributes to the extremely poor quality of education in several schools across the nation. Coupled with the shortage of professionally qualified teachers, the situation assumes a grimness that India needs to address urgently.
It is seen that the share of teacher component in total Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) budget has been increasing over the years from 35 per cent in 2011-12 to 59 per cent in 2014-15, the problem of teacher absenteeism and the shortage of professionally qualified teachers continues to plague the education scenario.