Current scenario: Female participation in education low across categories; distance education yet to reach its potential
Level wise enrolment in school and higher education has been lower for girls across categories (like primary, upper primary, elementary and secondary levels) in India for 2012-13. A McKinsey research study conducted across 95 countries places a definitive value to increased women’s participation in the workplace and projects that India could add 60% to 2025 GDP by bridging gender gap at work. India has one of the world’s largest gender gaps when it comes to labour force participation, with women accounting for only 23-24% of the total labour force and generating a mere 17% of the share of GDP.
In view of the concept of universal access to education, distance education can be a major catalyst. However in 2012-13, 88% of the enrolment in Higher Education was through Regular mode, while only 12% was through distance mode. The top 10 countries accounting for the inflow of foreign student in Higher Education in the country in 2012-13 were Nepal, Bhutan, Afghanistan, Iran, Malaysia, Iraq, Sudan, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and United States.
- India’s own ecosystem of startups is evolving rapidly and the next big thing is digital education. The way forward lies in smart blended learning techniques and leveraging the power of digital technology.
- An effective vocational education and training sector is the need of the hour to encash the much touted demographic dividend. In addition to turning our labour force “job ready” it will ill act as a significant demand driver.
- India, Australia education ties are to strengthen further, as representatives from Australian Capital Territory’s (ACT) and Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) are scheduled to visit India soon. As part of the visit, a memorandum of understanding will be signed by Indian government officials and CIT to train Indian students in spatial information, surveying and forensic science.
- The Chancellor of University of Wolverhampton, UK, Lord Swraj Paul is ready to provide significant assistance to improve education standards in India and enable it become a leading global economy by strengthening business innovation.
- The government will roll out an India-specific ranking framework covering higher educational institutes, in an answer to global ranking agencies where Indian universities and institutes including the IITs have never been able to make the cut.