Five states ruled by non-BJP parties, including Delhi and West Bengal, skipped the first State Educational Achievement Survey conducted by national assessment regulator PARAKH, according to Education Ministry officials. The survey, aimed at identifying areas requiring improvement in school teaching and learning, was carried out to understand the baseline performance in the development of the competencies at the end of the foundational, preparatory, and middle stages.
Survey Assessed Educational Capabilities
Conducted on November 3, the survey assessed educational competencies among students at the block level in India in classes three, six, and nine. "This extensive survey covered approximately 80 lakh students from three lakh schools at 5,917 blocks across the nation. It also includes 6 lakh teachers and more than 3 lakh field investigators. "The primary objective of this survey is to assess the learning competencies of students at the end of each educational stage, i.e., foundational, preparatory, and middle with a primary focus on Language and Mathematics," a senior Education Ministry official said.
The official added that barring Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, and West Bengal, all other states and Union Territories participated in the survey. Tools to assess students’ competencies were designed using scientific procedures, while the assessment methodology employed a paper-pen-based approach with OMR technology for data capture and analysis, which ensured the precision and efficiency of data acquisition and validation.
"With the successful execution of the State Educational Achievement Survey, 2023, crucial insights into the strengths and potential areas for enhancement within the education system will be available. These insights will form the bedrock for evidence-based policies and initiatives directed towards enriching the quality of education for the students," said School Education Secretary Sanjay Kumar. He said one of the noteworthy features of the survey this year was the expansion of the sample size to understand the learning gaps at the block level, a strategic shift from the district. "This transition was inspired by the objective of catering to a larger number of students and effectively understanding the performance at a deeper level. Furthermore, this approach also encompassed teachers’ professional development programs at the block level," Kumar said.
School Education Additional Secretary Vipin Kumar said this assessment, with the educational block as the finest unit of analysis, will carry profound implications for education policies, encompassing teacher training programs and the creation of teaching and learning support resources. "The insights gained from this survey will lead to evidence-based decision-making and the implementation of initiatives aimed at improving the education system," he said. Officials said that this is the first such survey conducted by the Performance Assessment, Review and Analysis of Knowledge for Holistic Development (PARAKH), an organisation under the NCERT.
(With inputs from PTI)