‘Quality education for all’ target difficult: Tharoor

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 09, 2012 Published on November 09, 2012

Shashi Tharoor, Minister of State for Human Resource Development. File Photo.

The target of delivering inclusive and quality education for all by 2015 in the nine most populous countries in the world may elude a number of developing countries.

At the ninth E-9 Ministerial Review Meeting on Friday, Shashi Tharoor, Minister of State for Human Resource Development, said, “Some countries may face greater challenges than others in meeting the EFA goals by the 2015 target date, and that the quality problem is more acute in the developing world, in part due to the rapid expansion of access.”

The E-9 Initiative launched in 1993, was aimed at achieving ‘Education for All’ by 2015.

The nine signatories — Bangladesh, Brazil, China Egypt, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria and Pakistan — are home to over 60 per cent of the world’s population, as also two-thirds of the world’s illiterates and half of the out-of-school children.

Tharoor also stressed the fact that developing a system of equitable quality education is an equally big challenge, not just for India, but across the world.

“Today, children and youth in low-income, in middle-income and in rich countries alike are not always learning what they are supposed to learn, nor acquiring the knowledge, skills and competences which equip them for the world of work and for active citizenship,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Government has no plans of relaxing the deadline for implementation of the Right to Education (RTE) Act.

On Thursday, M.M. Pallam Raju had said that some State Education Ministers has called an extension of the deadline and on the back of this a review of the RTE implementation would take place. However, sources said that the Ministry will not ease the deadline and keep up the pressure on the States to accomplish the task before March 31, 2013.

However, NGO’s and local agencies working towards children’s education said the States are far from achieving the targets set till March 2013 and in many States schools have met only about 7 per cent of the prescribed norms.

According to the findings by Central Advisory Board of Education, more than 12,000 new schools remain to be opened, while over 2,50,000 additional classrooms and large number of toilets, drinking water facilities, and ramps are still under construction.

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Published on November 09, 2012
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