Education-Issues and Challenges

Role of Various Institutions (Central, State and Other Organizations) in Promotion of Education


Education is one of the important tasks undertaken by the present modem Governments. In 1921, the department of education came under the control of Indian Minister. Between 1921-1940, there was rapid expansion of educational institutions and enrolment of students. Primary education was made compulsory.

The goals, procedures and machinery together constitute educational administration. Hence, in the words of Kandel, “Fundamentally the purpose of educational administration is to bring pupils and teachers together under such conditions as well as successfully promote the end of education.”

Today the term educational administration is comprehensively used. Educational administration is also linked with planning, organizing, directing, co-ordinating and controlling the objectives concerned with education. In the words of Mochiman Arthur, “Administration is essentially, a service activity and agency through which the fundamental objectives of the educational process may be fully and efficiently realized.”

Educational administration means the organisation structure for the administration of educational institutions. It is also connected with synonymous words like supervision, direction, guidance, coordination and control. The educational administration is also connected with personnel administration, institutional administration and financial administration.

Educational Administration in India:  In India there are basically four types of institutions to look after the development of primary and secondary education. They are:

(1) Central Government,

(2) State Government,

(3) Local Bodies/Institutions, and

(4) Private Institutions.


Ministry of Human Resource Development After Independence in 1947, a full-fledged Ministry of Education was established. The Centre gave funds to the States specially for expansion and development of primary education and adult education. The Central Government educational activities expanded and the Central Ministry of Education was reorganized from time to time. It helped the States by giving funds, technical advice, and by co-ordinating the activities of various states. It also constituted various advisory councils for giving advice to the states on several matters.


Today the Central Ministry of Education is closely connected with the Ministry of Human Resource Development. It is under the control of a Cabinet Minister. It was created by the Congress Government in 1985. The Department of Education, which is under the overall control of Human Resource Development of Union Ministry, is entrusted with the greater responsibility of school education.


The Minister of Human Resource Development


The Minister of Human Resource Development is appointed by the President of India on the advice of the Prime Minister. He is of cabinet rank. He is assisted by a Minister of State and a Deputy Minister. The main functions of the Minister for Human Resource Development are framing the educational policies, and executing the policies and ensuring uniformity in the method of education in various states. The Ministry also allocates available funds to different states for the development of education.


Secretary: Ministry of Human Resource Management The Secretary is the administrative head of the department. He supervises and controls the department. All files are routed through him only. In the administration, he is assisted by two Joint Secretaries, and three educational advisers. Their main duty is to tender advice on educational matters to the Minister through the Secretary. These advisers are assisted by Deputy Secretaries, Assistant Secretaries and Undersecretaries, holding charge of education. Three other Directors also assist him in the administration. The work of the Ministry is allotted to administrative officers.


They are responsible for the implementation of educational policies as well as execution of the decisions of the Government. The Ministry of Human Resource Development presently is concerned with about fifty subjects related to education. The following are some ofthe most important subjects:

  1. School Education
  2. Higher Education
  3. Technical and Professional Education
  4. Physical Education
  5. Youth Welfare
  6. Educational Research
  7. Languages
  8. Co-operation with UNESCO
  9. Exchange Programme, and
  10. Cultural Affairs.


Important Advisory Bodies


There are some other important bodies (Advisory Councils and Statutory Organizations) of the Central Government to discharge its functions and responsibilities in the field of education. They are:

  1. Central Advisory Board ofEducation (CABE)
  2. Central Board ofSecondary Education (CBSE), and
  3. National Council ofEducational Research and Training (NCERT)



Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE)


This Board was established in 1920. The main function of the Board was to give advice to the provincial governments. Unfortunately this Board was abolished in 1923. Basing on the recommendations of the Hartog Committee (1928) again the Board came into existence in 1935. Keeping in view the development of education in India, Central Government should play an important role in the educational restructuring. In this way this Board also played an important role in the educational system.


Composition of the Board


The Board consists of the following functionaries and is headed by the Ministry of Human Resource Development.


Chairman: Minister of Human Resource Development

Members of the Board:

  1. Minister of state of Human Resource Development
  2. Deputy Minister of Human Resource Development
  3. Education Ministers of all States
  4. One Representative of each Union Territory
  5. Two Rajya Sabha Members
  6. Four Lok Sabha Members
  7. Two Members of Inter-University Board
  8. Two Members of All India council of Technical Education (AICTE)
  9. One Member from Indian Council of Technical Education (ICTE)
  10. One Member from Medical Council of India (MCI)
  11. Sixteen Ex-Officio Members
  12. Sixteen Academicians (Nominated by the Government of India) and
  13. Member-Secretary (Educational Adviser) Government of India


Tenure: 3 Years (Except for Ex-Officio Members)


Educational Secretary of the Government of India prepares the agenda with the help of Member Secretary.



The most important functions of the Central Advisory Board of Education are:

  1. To give advice on any educational matter which was referred to the Board by the Government of India or State Government.
  2. Getting any information and giving report on the effective functioning of education in India, and
  3. Examining the information received by the Board and evaluating the information in an appropriate manner and giving recommendations to the Government of India or State Government.


However, the recommendations made by the Board are only advisory and not binding on the Central Government.


Central Board of Secondary Education


This board has been playing an important role towards improvement of educational standards, particularly in Secondary education, by changing the syllabus and text books from time to time to meet the changing needs of the society and thereby of the students. This Board is also concerned with better methods of teaching and evaluation. Some of the important activities of the Board are, bringing changes in the examination system and conducting Orientation Courses to the teachers for the enrichment of their knowledge.


Another important function of the Board is to conduct different types of examinations at National level relating to Secondary School level, All India Higher Examinations, Higher Secondary Technical Examinations, Matriculation Examinations, etc.


National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)


The NCERT came into existence in 1961. The composition of the Council is as follows:


Chairman : The Minister for Human Resource Development

Other Members:

  1. Four Vice-Chancellors of different Universities (one from each zone) nominated by the Government of India (One Representative of each State and Union Territory)
  2. All States and Union Territory Education Ministers (or his representatives) in case ofDelhi the Chief Executive Councillor.
  3. Two Ex-officio Members – Chairman, UGC; Secretary, Ministry of Human Resource Development, and
  4. Twelve Members nominated by the Government of India. Among them not less than four members must be school teachers.


Organisation: There is a Director and Joint Director of the Council. These are assisted by some other personnel to look after the day-to-day administration of the council.


Functions of the Council

The most important functions performed by the Council are:

  1. Formulation and implementation of Policies and Programmes relating to the School Administration.
  2. Conducting the Research work, Pilot projects, Training programmes and Extension activities. 3. Maintaining the relationship between Ministry of Human Resource Development Department and the State Education Departments, and
  3. Publishing Text books, Periodicals and some other Educational Literature for the benefit of the students.


Role of Central Government:


Since independence the Central Government has started spending increasing amount of money on education. The Central Govt. gives grant-in-aid to states, universities and special institutions in order to help those to discharge their educational obligations. It gives special grants to back-ward states in order to equalize them with other states. It finances the centrally administered areas and gives scholarships and stipends under the various scholarship schemes.


The contributions of the Central Government and State Governments have increased from time to time.


Following are the important reasons for this increase:

  1. The Central Government must assist the bank-ward states for providing better educational opportunities.
  2. The Central Government must assist the state in realizing the constitutional provisions for providing compulsory primary education in the age group 6 to 14 years.
  3. The Central Government has large resources for collecting finances.
  4. Central funds must be utilized for providing equality of opportunity.


The Central Government assists the states for educational development in three ways:

  1. Central Government performs educational functions through NCERT, UGC, Central Universities, Central Schools organizations etc.
  2. Central Government sponsors schemes fully financed by it but implemented by the States.
  3. Central Government partially finances some programmes, planned and implemented by the State Governments.


Role of State Governments in Educational Financing:

Education in India is a state responsibility and the bulk of educational expenditure.


The Finance Commission transfers adequate resources at the end of each Plan to each State under:

(a) Share in Income-tax,

(b) Share in excise, and

(c) Lumb-sum grant-in-aid.


The state recognizes schools and other institutions run by private bodies in accordance with set rules and regulations. It also provides them with suitable aids and grants to run efficiently and effectively. Financial aid is also given to Universities, functioning in the state.

Role of Local Bodies in Educational Financing:

Local Bodies like Municipalities, Boards, District bodies, Zilla Parisads and Panchayats run schools in their respective area. They appoint staff, provide equipment and finance to the these schools through local taxes and grants from the State Government. Such educational institutions are directly under the control of these Local Bodies.


For meeting the expenditure, the school committees should receive:

(1) A certain proportion of the income of the local village panchayat and

(2) A grant-in-aid fixed on the basis of equalisation.


State grants to local bodies on account of primary education should be based on a combination of the proportional grants, a special grant for backward areas and specific purpose grants. It would be in the interest of education to make it obligatory on municipalities to earmark a specified proportion of their net revenue for primary education. All funds thus earmarked for Primary Education should be entitled to receive grant-in-aid according to rules.


A cess on land revenue should be universally levied in all areas and that the legislation on the subject should provide for the minimum and maximum rates of such levy. In the village panchayats, as in the municipalities, a portion of the total revenue should be earmarked for Primary Education.



  • Women’s education in India: statistics
  • According to the statistics released by the latest census of 2011, India’s female literacy rate is 65.46 percent, significantly lower than the world average of 79.7 percent. China, India’s neighbor and the other global human resource powerhouse, precedes with 82.7 percent female literacy rate.
  • The Right to Education (RtE) Act, introduced in 2009 making elementary education free and compulsory in the country, has been a shot in the arm for many. Nevertheless, statistics reveal the dismal gap between states – while states like Kerala paint a rosy picture of women’s education in India with 92.07 percent female literacy, relatively backward states such as Bihar with 51.5 percent female literacy rate highlight the importance of sustained campaign in favour of women’s education in India.

Education is the crux

  • The impact of education on girls is extraordinary. Education sustains human values. It forms the foundation for learning and critical thinking. Education also provides skills for girls to become more self-reliant and provides them with more opportunities. Thinking into the future, education also provides them with the knowledge to manage health problems. A girl understanding her own body can make the difference between an unwanted pregnancy and an illegal abortion. Having the knowledge beforehand is crucial to saving and protecting lives.
  • Education does impact human development, as mentioned, along with economic development but the greatest impact is on democracy. Education is the only way a girl can be an informed citizen, leading the way for her to having her voice heard in society.  Education also provides a better overall quality of life. Research has shown the life expectancy rises by as two years for every one percent increase literacy (U.S. Census Bureau 1998). When women have a voice there can be changes made to existing laws changing the future for young girls.

Various Government Schemes for Girl Child

  • It is an integral part of general awareness to know about the central and state-specific schemes and also the joint collaboration schemes between the centre and state. The Ministries of Government of India have introduced various schemes from time to time offering financial incentives to girl children to enable parents to provide proper education have enough savings for marriage, get subsidies, loans and quotas. Some of the schemes announced by the government are explained below for the advantage of the parents.
  • Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana : (SSY)
  • Sukanya Samriddhi account is a famous and popular scheme backed by the Government of India. As part of ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ campaign started by the Government, this is a saving scheme for the benefit of the girl child. The scheme helps to save the future of a girl child, encourage parents to build a fund to meet the expenditure for education and marriage of their girl child. It has a number of benefits which are mentioned below.


  • The Sukanya Samriddhi Yojanaaccount pays an interest of 9.1% for each financial year. The interest rate offered in this is the highest when compared to other small saving schemes. This scheme is also one of the most tax-saving ones. One of the best features of this scheme is the provision of a lock-in period. You can certainly build an adequate amount to provide a bright future for your girl child. The account can be transferred too to another place if required.


  • The account can be opened by legal guardians or parents of a girl child only. The age of the girl child should not be more than 10 years. A certificate for proof of age has to be submitted along with the form. Only two accounts can be opened by parents or legal guardians of the child. An amount of Rs250/- is required to open the account. After completion of 21 years, the account can be closed.






  • To address the challenge of low enrolment of girlsin technical education institutes.
  • To minimize the gap between school education & engineering entrance examination.
  • To enrich and enhance teaching and learning of Science and Mathematics at senior secondary level
  • Intended Beneficiaries
  • Girls studying in classes XI only from KVs/ NVs/ Government Schools of any recognised Board/CBSE affiliated private schools in India.
  • Salient Features
  • Launched by CBSE under guidance of Ministry of HRD.
  • It trains girl students in entrance examinations to top institutions and provides them incentives and support through tutorials, video classes, etc.
  • Supports 1,000 selected disadvantaged girls per year



4 reasons why girls are pulled out of school

  • The first reason why girls are pulled out of school is because of family responsibilities. Girls provide free labor at home for the family. Home is also where they learn to be a better housewife. Many girls are kept at home because it is a better payoff than going to school. Having the girl attend school is not valuable to the whole family. This problem is lucidly evident in India, even in urban areas, but more prevalent with poorer families. Girls can be found doing everything from farm work to household chores.
  • The family plays a central role in a girl’s life and shaping her future. Respect is given to elders in all situations and no decision can be made without consulting an elder. This often leads to the practice of arranged marriages. The decision is entirely up to the family and the girl often does not even see her future husband until the day of the wedding. Compared to American norms, individuals growing up in India are much more dependent on their families, especially parents.
  • The second reason why girls are kept from receiving a primary education is because they are pulled out early to protect family honor. This also can affect the dowry when the girl is married. The boy’s side of the family can raise the dowry if they suspect she has been in school with boys during puberty. The practice of dowry is illegal, but laws are not always implemented. If the dowry cannot be paid, the bride runs the risk of being ruined, or worse, being killed. Honor killings are prevalent among the poor.
  • The third reason for inequality during primary education is because girls can’t attend school due to inadequate facilities. Schools are unable to provide safe and sanitary facilities for young girls to attend, and with the population increasing at a rapid speed the priority for new facilities is given to boys. In many cases, though, this is exacerbated by basic infrastructural problems: roads, running water, and electricity are often scarce.
  • The fourth reason girls are kept from school is because of the shortage of female teachers. The problem can be solved, but it starts with first educating girls so they can aspire to be teachers. The government, however, does not see this as a problem and continues to deny that there is gender inequality within the education sector. There have been efforts, as listed earlier, by the government to enroll more girls but this has not been for the nation of India, but rather for international recognition and numbers.


The Solution

  • All of these contribute to the issue of unequal access to education for girls along with many more issues. These four issues have many underlying issues that contribute to the overall problem. And to solve this issue we can look to three conclusions: NGOs and nonprofits, and the government’s response.
  • First, NGOs and nonprofits can offer the most helpful solution to this problem because of grassroots movements across rural India. Many of the past efforts have come from reviewing previous reports. NGOs and nonprofits work at a local scale where a difference can made, whereas the government has worked on a larger scale with less success.
  • Second, the government’s response can help the whole process of providing primary schools for girls. The Indian government has recognized the problem has been slow to act on the issue. As mentioned earlier, education is not a priority for the government right now; rather the government is focused on the economy. Without girls being involved in the future economy, the government is taking a risk and putting the issue off for another generation.


Educational Development of Minorities


  • “Education is the single most important instrument for social and economic transformation. A well educated population, adequately equipped with knowledge and skill is not only essential to support economic growth, but is also a precondition for growth to be inclusive since it is the educated and skilled person who can stand to benefit most from the employment opportunities which growth will provide.” (Para 10.1 of the Approach to the XIIth Five Year Plan). The Ministry of Human Resource Development has focused on an inclusive agenda, with a vision of realizing India’s human resource potential to its fullest, with equity and excellence.
  • “All minorities…shall have the right to establish and administer education institutions of their own”is the mandate, as per Article 30(1) of the Constitution. Government is committed to address the existing backwardness in education of minorities, especially the Muslims, constituting the major chunk of the minorities. Therefore, the Prime Minister’s New 15 Point Programme, inter-alia, aims to enhance opportunities for education of minorities ensuring an equitable share in economic activities and employment.
Communities Percentage of population Percentage of literacy
Muslims 12.4 59.1
Christians 2.3 80.3
Sikhs 1.9 69.4
Buddhists 0.8 72.7
Zoroastrians (Parsis) 0.007 97.9










  • According to ‘Sachar Committee Report’ “one-fourth of Muslim children in the age group of 6-14 years have either never attended school or are drop-outs. For children above the age of 17 years, the educational attainment of Muslims at matriculation is 17%, as against national average at 26%. Only 50% of Muslims who complete middle school are likely to complete secondary education, compared to 62% at national level”. The Report has also drawn attention to the low levels of educational attainment among Muslim women, Muslims in rural areas as well as in technical and higher education. The High Level Committee under the Chairmanship of Justice Rajinder Sachar has also made a number of recommendations for improvement of the educational status of the Muslim communities
  • Ministry of Human Resource Development has also constituted a National Monitoring Committee on Minorities’ Education (NMCME) under the Chairmanship of Hon’ble Minister of Human Resource Development. A Standing Committee under the chairmanship of Shri Siraj Hussain, IAS, Additional Secretary, Government of India and former Vice-Chancellor, Jamia Hamdard has also been constituted to address issues relating to educational empowerment of minorities. The objective of the Standing Committee and its Sub-Committees are, as under:-
  • To monitor the minority related schemes/programs being implemented by the Ministry of Human Resource Development;
  • To suggest modifications, if required, in the schemes of the Ministry of Human Resource Development with a view to cater to the specific needs and requirements of the minority community;
  • To study report of previous Committees which have gone into the issues of minority education and welfare and suggest ways and means to implement the recommendations/conclusions of those Committees;
  • To advise the Committee on setting up a monitoring mechanism for minority related schemes/programs being run by the Ministry of HRD and
  • Any other issues relating to minority education which the Committee may want to bring to the notice of the Government and NMCME.
  • Ministry of HRD has taken several significant initiatives, as detailed below, during XIth Five Year Plan and the momentum of which are being continued/accelerated during the XIIth Five Year Plan:-
  • Scheme for Providing Quality Education in Madrasas (SPQEM)
  • Scheme for Infrastructure Development of Private Aided/Unaided Minority Institutions (IDMI)
  • Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA)
  • Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBVs)
  • Extension of Mid-Day-Meals (MDM) Scheme to Madarsas/Maqtabs
  • ‘Saakshar Bharat’
  • Jan Shikshan Sansathan (JSS)
  • Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA)
  • Strengthening of the National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL)
  • Establishment of the National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI)
  • List of Minority Concentration Districts
  • Sub-Mission on Polytechniques under the coordinated Action for skill development
  • Girls Hostel Scheme
  • Setting up model schools

What Constitution Says

Article 46 of the Constitution states that, “The State shall promote, with special care, the education and economic interests of the weaker sections of the people, and, in particular of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, and shall protect them from social injustice and all forms of social exploitation.” Articles 330, 332, 335, 338 to 342 and the entire Fifth and Sixth Schedules of the Constitution deal with special provisions for implementation of the objectives set forth in Article 46. Similarly, Articles 30 (1) provides for the rights of the Minorities to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice. These provisions need to be fully utilized for the benefit of these weaker sections in our society.

National Monitoring Committee for Minorities’ Education (NMCME)

The National Monitoring Committee for Minorities’ Education (NMCME) has been reconstituted vie Ministry’s Resolution No. 6-4/2010-MC (Pt.) dated 23.12.2011. The first meeting of the reconstituted Committee was held on March 5, 2012 at New Delhi. At this meeting, a decision was taken to constitute a Standing Committee of NMCME and five sub-Committees of NMCME as under:

  • Implementation of Schemes Aimed at Minorities
  • Mapping of Educational Requirements of Minorities – Region & District-wise
  • Vocational Education & Skill Development of Minorities
  • Girls’ Education
  • Promotion of Urdu Language and enhance compatibility amongst minorities through knowledge of English.

The Government is also running the following Schemes for the improvement of Educational and Economic lot of the Minorities:

  • Central Sponsored Scheme for Providing Quality Education in Madrasa (SPQEM)
  • Scheme for Infrastructure Development Private Aided/Unaided Minority Institutes (IDMI) – (Elementary Secondary/Senior Secondary Schools)

The following material will help you understand better the work done for granting equal opportunities to the Minorities in the country:-

  • Prime Minister’s 15-Point Programme for Minorities’ Welfare (Including Status Report)
  • Major Initiatives for Educational Advancement of Minorities
  • Government Decisions on Sachar Committee Recommendations (Including Monitoring of Action Taken)
  • Findings of Research Conducted by NUEPA – Participation of Muslims in Higher Education



  • The Minister of State for Minority Affairs & Parliamentary Affairs said that Garib Nawaz Skill Development Centres will be established in 100 districts of the country.
  • These centres will effectively ensure employment-oriented skill development of youth belonging to Minority communities.
  • The courses will be short term (2 to 6 months) in fields such as mobile and laptop repairing, security guard training, housekeeping training, etc.

Jiyo Parsi

  • It is a central sector scheme formulated in September 2013 for containing population decline of Parsis in India.
  • Need of the Scheme: Population of Parsi community in India declined from 114,890 in 1941 to 57,624 as per Census 2011, thus declining by almost 50% in last 60 years.
  • Objective of Scheme: To target an increase in the Total Fertility Rate of the Parsi community, in order to stem or at least slow its population decline.
  • The Scheme will be implemented by the Parzor Foundation with the help of the Bombay Parsi Panchayat (BPP) and through the organizations/societies /Anjumans and Panchayat of the community concerned in existence for not less than three years.


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