Home Daily News ASER 2023 Report: Education Challenges in Rural Odisha’s Sambalpur District

ASER 2023 Report: Education Challenges in Rural Odisha’s Sambalpur District

by Nita Mishra

The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) for 2023 has painted a concerning picture of the state of education in rural Odisha. Let’s delve into the key findings that reveal the struggles faced by students in Sambalpur district.

1. Alarming Gaps in Basic Skills

The survey uncovered that a staggering 64% of students aged 14 to 18 in Sambalpur district lack the fundamental knowledge of division. Equally concerning is the fact that 46% of students struggle to read a sentence correctly, and only 55.5% can comprehend texts equivalent to Class II level.

2. Math Woes: The Divide Persists

In the realm of mathematics, the report exposes that a mere 35.9% of students can perform division. The situation is no better in subtraction, where students’ proficiency remains dishearteningly low.

3. English Literacy Lags Behind

English literacy also faces challenges, with only 53.6% of students in the 14-18 age group able to read sentences accurately. This points to a need for enhanced language education.

4. The Impact of Unprecedented Times

Students, like Priya Kudata from Rairakhol, attribute their struggles to the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 induced lockdown. The pandemic has left many students with a lack of proper study opportunities, affecting their understanding of various subjects.

5. Digital Dependence and Its Drawbacks

Educationists express concerns about students overly relying on mobile phones. Surendra Biswal notes that while Digital India offers solutions, it also contributes to students neglecting traditional learning methods, resulting in a decline in their academic performance.

6. ASER’s Nationwide Insight

ASER, a comprehensive nationwide household survey, captures the educational landscape across rural India. The recent report covers 28 districts, including Sambalpur, shedding light on the challenges faced by students.

7. Response from Educationists

Surendra Biswal emphasizes that students’ ease of problem-solving through digital means might be contributing to their diminishing reliance on teachers, leading to a lack of practice in subjects like mathematics.

8. Odisha’s Educational Dilemma

The report has raised questions about the overall state of the education system in Odisha. The District Education Officer of Sambalpur, Minarani Mangal, acknowledges the findings and promises a thorough review to identify actionable steps.

9. A Call to Action

In response to the ASER survey, educationists and authorities alike are urged to address the identified issues promptly. The concerns raised by students and educators alike underscore the need for a comprehensive approach to uplift the quality of education in rural Odisha. The collaborative effort of teachers, students, and educational authorities will play a pivotal role in shaping a brighter future for these young minds.

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