Education promotes equality and lifts people out of poverty. It teaches children how to become good citizens. Education is not just for a privileged few, it is for everyone. It is a fundamental human right.
~ Ban Ki-moon
Lack of Good Educational Facilities and Gender Inequality in Education
Going to school is a big step, but if the quality of education is poor it reduces their future prospects. Especially in rural areas, this is a major problem as there is no access to good quality education.
In some areas, children have to travel miles to get to school. In addition to this, economic and financial situation of families in rural areas drive children toward labor vs education.
Gender inequality in education is a major roadblock in getting girls to go to schools as families in rural areas are generally of lower economic status and don’t see the point in educating a child when there are no real opportunities post graduation. This is especially the case for a girl, who would rather be expected to support the family.
The quality of education, distance, lack of female teachers and poor sanitation are often quoted as reasons for leaving by many parents.
A majority of government-funded schools do not comply with basic standards set, not all teachers are professionally trained and even electricity is a luxury in some rural areas. Unless parents of the girl child see value in educating their child, they will resist doing so.
High School Dropouts and Social Misconceptions
According to UNICEF, 80 million children out of the 200 million admitted in elementary schools are likely to drop out. That’s right. 40 percent of the children between the ages of 6 and 14 would not even complete their elementary education.
According to this infographic, dalits, tribal minorities and adolescent girls are much more likely to drop out of school. For a nation that strives for aggressive rural development, we don’t seem to care much about our young, especially the deprived young, comprising of dalits, tribals, minorities and adolescent girls.
A joint study by Unesco Institute for Statistics and the Global Education Monitoring Report has found that 47 million adolescents in India have not progressed to upper secondary school. As per the data, the country has the highest number of out-of-school adolescents in the world.
A lot of girls aren’t enrolled to schools and a lot of the ones that are, drop out. Proper formal education will lead to girls having better jobs and being financially independent. There are various causes for this, some being :-
Girls are expected to stay home and raise a family, whereas men are expected to work. Given this a lot of parents don’t see the need to send their girl children to school.
Girl who do happen to work will not support their parents after they are married into another house, ergo, their education isn’t a priority to a lot of parents. On the other hand, investing on their male child’s education will be beneficial in the future because he’ll one day start to run the household and look after his parents.
In poor households girl children are expected to help with chores instead of throwing away time in school.
Learning household chores is a priority because it increases the girl’s value in the marriage market, thus, a lot of parents prefer their girl child stay home and learn what will really be of any use to her.