New Delhi: Kerala is the top performer among 20 large Indian states in terms of quality of education, closely followed by Rajasthan and Karnataka, a new Niti Aayog report said Monday.
While Kerala has aced the overall performance index, Karnataka has the best learning outcomes, according to the first School Education Quality Index (SEQI) report by Niti Aayog.
The report has adjudged states on two broad divisions — “learning outcomes” that consisted of learning, access, infrastructure & facilities, and equity outcomes, and “governance processes aiding outcomes”.
Uttar Pradesh, the country’s most populous state, languishes at the bottom in both the categories.
Andhra Pradesh, a third southern state, has ranked high on learning outcomes and overall score on the index. Gujarat and Assam round up the top six in overall scores.
Prepared by Niti Aayog in association with the Ministry of Human Resource Development and World Bank, the report has accessed the performance of states and union territories for the academic year 2016-17.
The index that has been prepared on the basis of 30 indicators, was divided into two broad categories identified above.
Among the smaller states, Manipur, Tripura and Goa bagged the top three positions in overall performance. However, Manipur is the best performer in learning outcomes, and Arunachal Pradesh is the worst performer.
Among the UTs, Chandigarh, Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Delhi rank the best, respectively, for both learning outcomes and overall performance.
According to Niti Aayog, the SEQI report aims to drive policy reforms to improve the quality of school education in India. The index is meant to serve as a “regular and transparent review” of the status of school education quality across states and union territories.
In the overall performance, Kerala scored 76.6 per cent, while other states in the top six all scored above 60 per cent. Uttar Pradesh secured a mere 36.4 per cent, according to the SEQI index.
Out of the 20 large states, 18 improved their overall performance scores between 2015-16 and 2016-17. Five of these states — Haryana, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha and Gujarat — showed high rates of improvement, with increases of 18.5, 16.8, 13.7, 12.4 and 10.6 percentage points, respectively.
However, the report noted that the states’ overall performance may hide variations in their performance on the underlying categories.
Karnataka led with a score of 81.9 per cent in the “learning outcomes” category while Uttar Pradesh could only manage 34.1 per cent.
In the “governance processes aiding outcomes” category, Kerala took the top spot with a score of 79 per cent while Jharkhand was at the bottom with a score of 21.0 per cent.
The report highlighted that amid challenges of improving learning outcomes, educational access and infrastructure for states and UTs, greater focus and investments are required.
“The index comprises indicators that will help steer a state/UT’s efforts to improve the delivery of quality education. It is hoped that the index provides instructive feedback to them and non-governmental service providers to drive crucial reforms and encourage innovation in cost-effective policy approaches,” the report said.