Duration: August 2021 to June 2022
Funder/ Partner: UNICEF, New Delhi
The introduction of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act in 2009 provided the legal mandate for the provision of elementary education for the age group of 6-14 years but the same framework has not been extended to cover the secondary and early childhood stages of education. However, more recently in 2018, Government of India has initiated Samagra Shiksha (SS) an overarching programme for the school education sector extending from pre-school to class 12. The scheme has been prepared with the broader goal of improving school effectiveness measured in terms of equal opportunities for schooling and equitable learning outcomes. It subsumes the three existing schemes of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher Education (TE). While the idea is to address the systemic inefficiencies but the existing of multiple schemes have created parallel institutional arrangements and have also to some extent led to duplication of efforts and personnel towards implementing similar interventions and achieving similar objectives. Moreover, the education delivery in different states is also guided by their own histories of governance, economic capacities, and political priorities. Apart from the regular Ministry of Education, several other departments and Ministries like Ministry of Social Welfare and Empowerment, Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Minority of Minority Affairs, Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) Ministry of Panchayati Raj etc. and other local governments are actively involved in the delivery of education in the country.
The Early Childhood Education (ECE) has traditionally been with the Ministry of Women and Child Development but is increasingly being organically linked to school education. The New Education Policy (NEP), 2020 seeks to restructure the school education curricula and pedagogy in a new 5+3+3+4 design 3 replacing the earlier 10+2 pattern. While the education is delivered by receiving resources from diverse departments and ministries, the information on specific nature of schemes/programmes and the budget/ amount of resources that are spent on the same does not clearly exist. A mapping of all the programmes and schemes by various ministries and departments including the size of resources would indeed help in understanding the mosaic better, and will also help in:
(i) identification of areas where process reforms could make the delivery more efficient, and
(ii) identification of resource rich and resource-poor areas for future budget priorities.
The mapping exercise will also throw light upon the issues of duplication of efforts and lack of coordination leading to the identification of processes that need to be reformed.
The specific objectives are –
– Mapping of all the major schemes relevant for ECE or/and school education covering the age-group of 3-18 years by all departments / ministries, and for the age of children and stage of education. Mapping of these programmes and schemes by their respective objectives and contributions in attaining the school education goals.
– Mapping the budget and expenditure of these programmes and schemes (including salaries and programme expenditure) by size, sources (Centrally sponsored Schemes, Central sector schemes and State Schemes) and gauge their relative importance in total budget/expenditure for education through an analysis of both trends and patterns.
– Identification of areas where process reforms could improve service delivery (including the issues of coordination and decision-making exercises) and alignment of objectives for certain key programmes and schemes.