Varied school enrollment data for Muslims: new survey

By Kashif-ul-Huda,

All over India about 56% of Muslim children are enrolled in upper primary education (grade 3 to 5). A new survey released yesterday reveals that about 70% of Muslim students are enrolled in primary education schools. However, state level data reveals a varied enrollment picture for Muslims (See the data table below).

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“Flash Statistics: Elementary Education in India: Progress towards Universal Elementary Education” was released yesterday by HRD Minister Arjun Singh. This survey for 2006-07 is based on the data received from as many as 1.20 million schools spread over 609 districts across 35 States & Union Territories of India.

This is the first time that enrollment of Muslim students at the primary and upper primary levels of education is included in this annual survey. The data presented here mirrors conclusion reached by Sachar Committee regarding Muslim education at the primary level. Muslim enrollment is presented state wise in the latest survey.

Orissa, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, and Puducherry seem to be best for Muslim children where more than 80% are enrolled in a school. In Orissa Muslims make up only 2.07% of the population but of the total enrollment of primary and upper primary Muslims make up 7.26% and 6.48% respectively. For Karnataka enrollment share is 13.54% for primary and 12.39% for upper primary whereas Muslims are 12.23% of the state population according to the 2001 census.

For West Bengal, Chandigarh, Assam, Maharashtra, and Goa data suggest sudden drop in enrollment after primary level of education. This drop is especially steep for West Bengal and Assam which deserve an investigation by the state government and local Muslim organizations.

For Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh there is higher enrollment percentage of Muslims for upper primary than primary education. This can mean either that fewer numbers of Muslims are entering the school system than before or that Muslims share in the population is decreasing for these states that is being reflected in the enrollment.

States of particular concern are Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Assam which have a sizable number but very low level of Muslim enrollment.

The survey ranks states by Educational Development Index (EDI) to help in annual ranking and measuring progress at the district and the state level. Aim of the exercise is to promote universal education under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA). The government has proposed a number of schemes to promote education in districts where significant population of Schedules Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and Minorities reside.

The EDI is calculated taking into account access, infrastructure, teacher and outcomes related indicators. The index is calculated using 23 variables. These variables are for Access (Percentage of habitations not Served, Availability of Schools per 1000 Population and Ratio of Primary to Upper Primary Schools/Sections), Infrastructure (Average Student-Classroom Ratio, School with Student-Classroom Ratio greater > 60, School without Drinking Water Facilities, School with Boy’s Toilet, School with Girl’s Toilet), Teachers( (Percentage of Female Teachers, Pupil-Teacher Ratio, School with Pupil Teacher Ratio > 60, Single- Teacher Schools (in schools with more than 15 students), Percentage of Schools with 3 or less Teachers, Teachers without Professional Qualification), Outcomes (Gross Enrolment Ratio – Overall, Scheduled Castes : Gross Enrolment Ratio, Scheduled Tribes: Gross Enrolment Ratio, Gender Parity Index in Enrolment, Repetition Rate, Drop-out Rate, Ratio of Exit class over Class 1 Enrolment (Primary stage only), Percentage of Passed Children to Total Enrolment, Percentage of Appeared Children passing with 60 per cent and above Marks).

Delhi tops the EDI for primary level, Puducherry is 2nd and Kerala is at No.3 and Bihar at 35th Jharkhand at 34, Uttar Pradesh 24, West Bengal 30 and Arunachal Pradesh at 33.

At the Upper Primary level, Kerala is on the top, followed by Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and Chandigarh. Like Primary level, Bihar and Jharkhand are respectively ranked 35th and 34th at the upper primary levels of education also.

For composite primary and upper primary level of education, Kerala is ranked 1st followed by Puduchery, Delhi and Tamil Nadu. Bihar and Jharkhand are also ranked at 35th & 34th respectively.

The survey that is based on District Information System for Education (DISE) was developed by the National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA), New Delhi.


State Muslim as % of population enrollment % of Musims at primary level % at upper primary level
A & N Islands 8.22 4.29 3.01
Andhra Pradesh 9.17 10 9.11
Arunachal Pradesh 1.88 0.04 0.02
Assam 30.92 30.42 17.39
Bihar 16.53 8.95 6.6
Chandigarh 3.95 2.87 2.39
Chhattisgarh 1.97 0.56 0.84
D & N Haveli 2.96 NR 0.01
Daman & Diu 7.76 0.12 0.55
Delhi 11.72 5.4 7.36
Goa 6.84 4.59 3.67
Gujarat 9.06 4.11 4.25
Haryana 5.78 0.55 0.41
Himachal Pradesh 1.97 1.17 1.09
Jammu & Kashmir 66.97 62.52 60.55
Jharkhand 13.85 7.29 6.3
Karnataka 12.23 13.54 12.39
Kerala 24.7 10.13 9.59
Lakshadweep 95.47 NR NR
Madhya Pradesh 6.37 2.3 2.3
Maharashtra 10.6 7.94 5.83
Manipur 8.81 NR NR
Meghalaya 4.28 0.04 0.02
Mizoram 1.14 NR NR
Nagaland 1.76 0.03 0.02
Orissa 2.07 7.26 6.48
Puducherry 6.09 5.1 5.13
Punjab 1.57 0.22 0.11
Rajasthan 8.47 2.3 1.38
Sikkim 1.42 0.33 0.28
Tamil Nadu 5.56 3.82 3.95
Tripura 7.95 NR NR
Uttar Pradesh 18.5 9.24 7.18
Uttarakhand 11.92 0.31 0.2
West Bengal 25.25 27.92 19.63
All States 13.43 9.39 7.52