A total of 6.28 lakh girl students were enrolled in private schools in 2016-17, against 9.37 lakh boys enrolled the same year. This is in sharp contrast to government schools, where 8.10 lakh girls and 7.18 lakh boys were enrolled, the Economic Survey 2017-18, released by the Delhi government on Monday, shows. According to experts, the figures suggest that when it comes to sending a child to private school, parents usually pick the boy. “This has been a general trend for some years now, especially in states such as Haryana, Rajasthan… We didn’t know it was the same in Delhi. Even in a family, it is generally boys who are given preference,” said Anita Rampal, professor at Delhi University’s department of education.
In 1,715 private schools, the total number of boys enrolled was 9.37 lakh, compared to 6.28 lakh girls in 2016-17. A similar trend was seen in 2015-16 — 9.16 lakh boys and 6.10 lakh girls were enrolled across 2,113 schools. It’s a different story in government schools, though. According to data from 2016-17, 8.10 lakh girls and 7.18 lakh boys were enrolled in 1,017 government schools. The trend was similar in 2015-16, when 7.95 lakh girls and 7.14 lakh boys were enrolled. While total enrolment at both government and aided schools is 37.92%, that of private schools is 39.95%. The survey also shows that the percentage share of private schools in terms of total enrolment has also increased from 35.21% in 2013-14 to 39.95% in 2016- 17.
“This is the thing with an urban setting — there are more children going to private schools. However, the national ratio of government to private schools stands at 60:40… In some places, it is even 70:30,” Rampal said. The survey also shows that while the number of government schools has increased from 1,011 to 1,017, private schools have gone down from 2,113 to 1,715. Performance of Delhi students
According to the economic survey, performance of Delhi students in 2014-15 was below the national average in subjects such as English, Mathematics and Science. Referring to the National Achievement Survey Summary, 2015, the survey shows that the performance of Class V students in reading comprehension was 227, against the national average of 241. Similarly for Mathematics, Delhi stood at 223, while the national average is 241. For environmental studies, it is 223 in Delhi, while the national average is 244.
Girls performed better in all three subjects, it found. The trend was the same for Class X students. However, Class X students were on a par with the national average in subjects such as Social Science, and higher than the national average in Modern Indian Languages. The national achievement score is out of 350. A senior DOE official said it was for this reason that the government introduced the ‘Chunauti 2018’ scheme to improve learning levels. “It is aimed at bridging the accumulated learning deficits of classes VI-VIII… and ensuring rigorous inputs to address the failure trend in Class IX and zero dropout. As part of the scheme, the reading campaign helped nearly 1 lakh students of classes VI-VIII to move from non-reader to reading grade appropriate text,” the official said.