NEW DELHI: Notwithstanding the impetus on improving education outcomes among Muslim students, around 47 per cent of schools grapple with poor learning outcomes among their Muslim pupils, vis-a-vis 45 per cent in case of non-Muslim students, according to a recent government report.
The report revealed that the percentage of school leavers among Muslim students was 4.8 per cent as against 3.9 per cent among their non-Muslim peers. Lack of enthusiasm among parents in keeping tabs on their wards’ attendance at school and the pressure faced by students to assist their parents at work have been attributed as the major causes of the disparity.
The report, titled ‘Assessment of facilities available for primary and upper primary education in Muslim pre-dominant areas,’ was produced by the Ministry of Human Resource Development, in collaboration with Jamia Millia Islamia University, and covers government schools and private schools as well as Madrasas.
It has stated that educational progress among Muslims has been disproportionate across state lines, with Uttarakhand benefitting the most from government-sponsored schemes and poll-bound Assam lagging behind. The percentage of Madrasas that benefitted from the HRD Ministry-sponsored ‘Scheme to Provide Quality Education in Madrasas’, was highest in Uttarakhand, with 65.2 per cent, followed by Uttar Pradesh with 14.5 per cent and Assam with 9 per cent. The scheme, launched in 2006, aims at strengthening Madrasas’ proficiency in teaching subjects like Science, Mathematics, Languages and Social Studies.
The findings of the study, which took into account 34 Madrasas, revealed there were an average of 5.6 classrooms per Madrasa. While 14 of them had more than five classrooms, 12 of them had three to five classrooms and the rest had only one or two classrooms.
Further, the report stated that the percentage of Madrasas adopting multi-grade teaching was much higher in government Madrasas compared to private Madrasas, at both the primary and upper-primary levels.
Significantly, the report observed that Muslim parents were not averse to modern or mainstream education and therefore, the notion that Muslims prefer Madrasas for educating their children was false.