Education has been a thrust sector ever since India attained Independence. The year 2010 was a landmark year for education in the country.The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009, (File referring to external site opens in a new window) representing the consequential legislation to the Constitutional (86th Amendment) Act, 2002, was enforced with effect from 1st April, 2010.The RTE Act secures the right of children to free and compulsory education till completion of elementary education in a neighbourhood school.
The government introduced the District Primary Education Programme in November 1994 to regulate the elementary education system in India. The programme aims at operationalising the strategies for achieving UEE through district specific planning and disaggregate target setting.
There are other programmes for compulsory elementary education, especially for girls. The Kasturba Gandhi Shiksha Yojana aims at establishing residential schools for girls in all districts, which have a particularly low female literacy rate. Institutes like National Bal Bhavan (External website that opens in a new window) encourage children to pursue activities as per their liking, and thus enhance their creative potential. Other programmes such as the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (External website that opens in a new window) and the Mid-Day Meal Scheme (External website that opens in a new window) have been introduced with the intention of attracting more children (and parents) towards literacy.
The RTE Act, 2009 (File referring to external site opens in a new window) lays down norms and standards relating to pupil teacher ratios, buildings and infrastructure, school working days and teacher working hours.
Source: National Portal Content Management Team, Reviewed on: 09-07-2012