Covid fallout: Enrolment in schools declines by 26,154

Bhanu P Lohumi

Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 3

The number of students enrolled in schools in Himachal Pradesh declined by 26,154 (government 7,643 and private 18,511) during 2020-21. The enrolment of students declined the most in the primary section (21,328).

The dropout rate rose at the primary and middle levels from 0.86 per cent and 0.55 per cent, respectively, in 2019-20 to 1.89 per cent and 1.36 per cent in 2020-21. Even the enrolment of children with special needs fell from 9,232 in 2019-20 to 6,751 in 2020-21.

The decline rate of enrolment in primary section was 31 per cent (6,568) in government-run schools and 69 per cent (14,760) in private schools, as per the Unified District Information System for Education report 2020-21. (The data base of the DISE report was of September 30, 2020).

However, enrolment in Class XI and XII) rose from 2,01,904 to 2,04,473 during the year. As per the report, 40 schools closed, as a result of which the number reduced from 18,185 to 18,145 while the number of primary schools declined from 11,195 to 11,164. However, the number of government schools declined marginally from15,330 to 15,323.

The state had achieved nearly 100 per cent enrolment at the primary and elementary levels but labourers and self-employed people left for their hometowns following the outbreak of Covid-19 and their children were not enrolled in schools of the state.

The fall in enrolment in private schools is attributed to high fee and salary cut, following the Covid outbreak. The enrolment during the current academic session (2021-22) was not taken into account and the true picture will be known in the next year's report, as enrolment has gone up by about 29,000 in government schools during 2021-22, according to official sources.

Courtesy: Tribune News Service

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