Education policies in India since independence have primarily laid stress on providing universal access to schools and achieving universal elementary education. Elementary education is now a basic right. Access to schools is now a reality with about 96 per cent of the rural habitations having an elementary school within a radius of 3 kms. In the recent years, there has been a dramatic rise in the private unaided schools all across India, and enrollment has been rapidly shifting from government schools. This has set a debate on access and efficiency of government schools in India.
In this talk, we will share the preliminary ideas of the proposed study on school size distribution and spread of small schools in Karnataka at state and district level. Based on secondary data analysis and pilot surveys in rural and urban clusters of Karnataka, we will assess the role of re-structuring of government schools in terms of access, equity and efficiency and the challenges attached.
Work done jointly with: Ms. K Vaijayanti, research head, Akshara Foundation.