Private tuition in India is a parallel form of teaching students in comparison to the mainstream classroom education system in schools. Its emergence is largely due to declining quality of education in the schools and several other inadequacies such as lack of personal attention to students. It is nowadays rampant at all educational levels, however, preponderant in secondary educational system. Students readily make hefty payments to such private tutorials because the performance in public examinations is considered significant for meeting increased competition relating to entrance examinations, seeking admission in the desired educational stream, professional and technical education etc.
Research carried out by ASSOCHAM (Associated chamber of Commerce and Industry of India) in June 2013 indicate that 87% of children in primary school and up to 95% pupils in high schools had undertaken private tutoring, mainly in metropolitan cities. The reasons identified are the degrading quality of mainstream education and the desire to stay ahead in global economy. The secondary school enrollment for such private tutoring has increased by 92% between the years 2006 till 2013. Another survey carried out by the same association named ‘Business of Private tutoring centres in India’ indicate that such private institutions have easily become a multi billion rupee industry with recorded growth of 35% in the last 5 years. Private tutoring industry touched an income level of $40 billion (INR 2,38,677.36 crore) in the year 2015. The survey also states that teachers from reputed schools & colleges join private tutoring centres, leaving their jobs to earn five times the money they used to earn through regular employment.
There are several reasons why private tutoring is becoming more popular than formal coaching in India and these can be classified as personal, academic and social. Personal reason involves the yearning to get higher marks through personalized attention given in private tuition. Social reason include parental decision, pressure from peer groups while academic reasons comprise of the students’ inability to understand the classroom instructions, poor quality of teaching, and lack of concentration in classroom activities.
Students from the government schools attend private tuition classes, mostly to quality in the public examinations. However, in case of private unaided schools, the students look forward to score high marks and have better edge over peers. Large section of students from government aided schools attends private tutoring because they find it difficult to understand classroom teaching. Most of the students avail tutoring in subjects like science, mathematics and English. Few other reasons are overcrowded classrooms, single teacher teaching more than one subject, poor handling of important subjects in class, lack of personal attention to students’ queries and doubts, absenteeism of teachers, loss of school working days, inability of the teacher to complete syllabus on time, lack of quality monitoring in government schools, and poorly framed policies which are inadequate to raise the level of education.
Recent survey conducted by an independent educational body on four states starting from Kerela, an academically progressive state exhibits highest number of students (55%) at the secondary level taking private tuition. This was followed by Maharashtra (49.35%), while students in Uttar Pradesh accounted (46.67%) and finally the lowest was at Andhra Pradesh (32.26%).
The above data clearly indicates that the student enrolled in Grade X is significantly higher as compared to Grade IX. Average percentages of pupils going for private tuition in Grade X is 58.8% in comparison to 32% in Grade IX. There is, however, a disparity in rural versus urban India in terms of number of students taking private tuitions. Extent of private tuition in urban areas is much higher (64%) as compared to rural areas (29.3%) at the secondary level. The following table indicates this in the chosen states, except Kerela where the disparity between urban-rural is found to be marginal.
The available data and information exhibit an increasing trend of private tutorials in India which act as surrogate of the formal education system. Private tutoring is not only a lucrative business for individuals running such institutions, it is considered to be the main source where students get personalized attention, can clarify their doubts, engage in brainstorming and get exceptionally prepared for appearing in any kind of examination.
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