E. T. Mohammed Bahseer, the Hon’ble Member of Parliament addressed the students in ‘Students Parliament’ on the topic ‘Political Economy of Education’.
He said, education plays a vital role in Economic Development of the nation. Qualitative Human Capital is the back bone of all economic activity. Given the importance of Education in over all development of the nation it is inevitable that the GOI of India should play a promising role in facilitating this sector to make our education system a global standard. He also said, focus should be not only on the quantity but also on the quality of education available for the population. Higher education and research, girls education, and education for backward people in rural India should be given the deserving priority in the list of agendas of GOI. He agreed privatization and commercialization of education is a genuine issue and said we have raised our concern against these issues whenever it was required. He also clarified that education cannot be provided only on public funds some alternative means needs to be explored under separate regulations should be formulated. He answered the queries raised by the students of different colleges and universities through India. Mr. T. Mohammed Basheer has congratulated SIO for making such sincere efforts to bring the education related issues under the notice of GOI and other concerned people and also forwarding the possible solution.
In conclusion, Mr. S M Wasiullah, Research Scholar, B S Abdur Rahman University, Chennai who chaired the session, said the world economies are growing with swift pace. There has been debate on who will lead the global economy. If we want to develop the economy in the new era of globalization and put ourselves before the world as a leader then we should accelerate our growth rate (7.5%) to make it two-digits. This is possible only when a qualitative human capital is inducted in wheel of economic development. With the current level of spending on education we may not be able to produce the kind of human capital required in future.
Hence, the public expenditure on education should be increased. But this does not necessary mean that the government should downsize expenditure on one head of the education sector to increase the budget on the other head. Nor does it mean that government should downsize expenditure on any of the sub-sector of social sector to increase budget on education.
Considering the importance of education in India’s socio-economic development, it is widely accepted that the GOI should play a key role in ensuring equitable distribution of education and educational opportunities to the entire population.
Mr. Chinmay Mahanand, President, BAPSA, has also gave is valuable inputs on the topic.
Following are the recommendations for GOI:
- GOI should ensure that up to a given level, all students irrespective of caste, sex or location, have access to education of a comparable quality. An equitable environment should be provided to all those who seek education in India.
- Efforts to increase in National Literacy Rate – average literacy rate (74.04%, below the World 84%) should be made
- Efforts increase in Gross Enrollment Ratio (GRE) especially in higher education (which is around 23.6%) should be made.
- Drop-out rate should be brought down further as sill 30% children in Elementary level and 20% children in Primary level could not complete their education.
- Girls and Women Education should be given more priority and more funds should be allocated.
- Backward classes and minorities should be given more priority and more funds should be allocated.
- Financial Aid and Scholarships should be increased and more funds should be earmarked.
- Efforts should be made to raise the level of quality of education at School Education (especially Secondary Education) and Higher Education.
- More funds should be allocated for Teacher Training and Appointment (30% primary schools and 15% upper primary schools have PTR ranging 30:1 & 35:1) should be allocated.
- More funds should be allocated for Infrastructure Development for Schools, Institutions, Universities should be allocated.
- GOI should facilitate to increase the Employability of graduates