Education in Rural India: Perspective from a North Indian Village
Oxford Internet Institute
July 24, 2008
Today, 72.2% of the Indian population lives in rural areas, that is, around 750 millions of people with respect to the 2001 Census. Although it is obvious that the Millennium Development Goals regarding education won’t be achieved in overall India and more especially in the rural segments of this country, we note since more than two decades a strong and increasing willingness of the Indian government to improve the access to its schooling system, especially to its elementary education. This is achieved by a constantly growing mobilization of resources and the succession of important and original initiatives such as the Mid-Day meal Scheme, for instance. However, Indian society and even more rural Indian society are still heavily characterized by specific features such as castes, religion, gender asymmetries, household organization, and so on. The first aim of this paper is then to put in perspective the positive changes that are expected to have occurred in the rural-Indian primary education with respect to the main socio-cultural characteristics governing these rural communities; this over a 25 years period, by taking three ‘snapshots’ of the schooling situation in a North Indian village at three different points in time, 1983, 1993 and 2008. In a second time and following a large and growing literature which tends to show that government education policies are not the primary determinants of enrollment, we are interested in explaining the schooling decision as a household decision, taking again into account the main features that make a rural Indian household.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 53
Keywords: development, economics, india, rural, education, enrolment, palanpur, log likehood
JEL Classification: noneworking papers series
Date posted: May 25, 2010 ; Last revised: August 8, 2012
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