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Students of classes III and V in 22 Chandigarh government schools can’t solve simple math problems: Study

These are the findings of the state-level learning achievement survey conducted in government schools by a Chandigarh- based college recently.

Written by Ifrah Mufti | Chandigarh |
Updated: September 22, 2015 5:36:02 am

IN AS many as 22 city government schools, students of classes III and V cannot solve a simple multiplication of 2 by 5 or a division of 24 by 6 while more than half of the students can only read letters but not words both in English and Hindi and a large number of them cannot even frame a simple sentence like “I was going to school”.

These are the findings of the state-level learning achievement survey conducted in government schools by a city- based college recently, and the class III and class V students have once again performed below average in both languages and mathematics.

chd-govt-schoolAlmost similar results have come up even after a year when the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) had stated in its National Achievement Survey 2014 that the performance of the class III and class V students of the city government schools was much lower than the national average when they were asked to recognise a simple text, or do simple addition or substraction.

On the grounds of the NAC report, the UT Education Department had planned to check if a student could actually read or write or could do simple calculations in government schools. Thus, a survey was conducted by the Dev Samaj College of Education, Sector 36, under the supervision of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) mission of the UT Education Department. For the survey, 36 government schools of the city were randomly selected.

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According to the performance equity analysis reported in the recent findings of learning achievement survey 2015,
more than half of the schools being considered in the survey have scored below average, which is 21.23 out of the total score of 50 for class III and 27.52 out of 50 for class V in all the subjects.

With a maximum score given as 10, class III students studying mathematics in 20 government schools have scored below the average score of 6.28 and class III students studying English in 22 government schools have also scored below average score of 3.65. Similarly, students of class V studying mathematics in 20 government schools have scored below average — 5.03 — and students studying English in 17 government schools have scored even worse — which is less than the average of 4.23.

As per the class III students’ performance in language skills, considering a maximum score of four, 17 schools have scored below 1.79 in English listening, 24 schools have scored below 1.45 in English reading, 19 schools have scored below 1.59 in English speaking. The worst results are in English writing where 24 schools have scored below 0.84 out of a maximum score of 4. Similar is the situation in class V as well.

The report has also suggested some observational remedial suggestions, including programmed learning classes and a ‘student academic sustenance programme’ for students. Sudesh Raghav, principal of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 46, said, “The reason for such scores is possibly the pupil-teacher ratio which is mostly above 50:1, especially in the primary classes. Another reason is that students feel scared in front of the people who come to take the test since they are outsiders. Thus, the students tend to give wrong answers. Otherwise, they are confident and open to their own teachers.”

Meena Kapoor, principal of Government High School, Sector 7, said, “Till the time I do not see the results myself, I cannot comment. I believe my children can easily read and write English and solve mathematical problems. I do not find any reason for my school getting low scores.”

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