NITI Aayog has released its first School Education Quality Index (SEQI) to rank states on the quality of education they provide.
- As per SEQI, Kerala emerged as the best-performing state with good quality school education while Uttar Pradesh was the worst.
- Among smaller states, Manipur ranks first while Arunachal Pradesh ranks least.
- Manipur has a score of 68% while Arunachal Pradesh has a score of 24.6%.
- But, the Union Territory Chandigarh pipped all with a score of over 80%.
- Among UTs, Lakshadweep scored the lowest.
- Kerala scored 76.6% and the second best state Rajasthan scored 72.9%.
- Uttar Pradesh has a score of 36.4% among 20 large states.
Need For SEQI
- NITI Aayog has been in the process of raking States’ performance in various indicators including water, health, ease of doing business, etc.
- The central government in collaboration with the World Bank is planning to grant incentives to states based on the higher rankings they get in the SEQI.
- The assessment of the states in the first-ever SEQI is based on learning outcomes, access to schools, equity in education, school infrastructure and facilities, and government processes that aids in development of school education.
- Assessment of states was based on the data from the National Achievement Survey (NAS) of 2017-18 and the Unified District Information on School Education data of 2016-17. Also, self-reported data from states verified by a third-party was used.
- As per the chairman of NITI Aayog Amitabh Kant,
the high variation in the performance between high ranking states and low
ranking ones point to gaps which need to be plugged.
he also noted that equity in education is something that is worrisome as most large states have an equity index score of around 60%.
- This needs to be addressed as children from all backgrounds and all strata of society must get the same quality of education.
- In the equity index, indicators such as language and mathematics outcomes of SC/ST and OBC students vis-a-vis general category students are measured. Also, their transition to higher classes is measured.
- The index also compares the performance of girls versus boys and students in rural and urban areas.
- Also included in the assessment were the accessibility to children with special needs and the availability of girls’ toilets in the schools.
- In the equity index, Tamil Nadu topped the list.
- The state is also top in access outcomes such as enrolment, the percentage of out-of-school children mainstreamed into schools and the rate of transition to higher classes.
- Karnataka topped in learning outcomes which has the highest weightage in the index. Learning outcomes include language and mathematics learning of class 3, class 5 and class 8 students.
SEQI and PGI
- A similar index was released by the Ministry of Human Resource Development in April 2019 called Performance Grading Index (PGI)
- But the major difference between SEQI and PGI is that SEQI accorded larger weightage to learning outcomes while input and infrastructure have higher weightage in PGI.
- PGI measures the quality of school education on the basis of 70 parameters.
- It is a tool to provide insights on school education in states and UTs.