Trend almost similar in government, aided, unaided schools
For the second consecutive year, schools following the State syllabus have registered a sharp fall in class one enrolment and in the total strength of students from class one to ten.
Figures that reached the Directorate of Public Instruction from the districts on Thursday show that the total strength in government, aided, and unaided schools has dipped by 1,34,673, with the student population now put at 38,51,515 against last year’s 39,86,188.
As for enrolment to class one, only 2.9 lakh students have joined the State syllabus schools this year, against last year’s 3.02 lakh. The figure for 2011-12 was 3.3 lakh, a steady decline. On the overall strength aspect, no district has shown even a slight increase in the figures, with the numbers dipping the most in Pathanamthitta district, where the fall is 6.1 per cent against the State average of 3.37 per cent. Malappuram has fared better than other districts, with the fall being just 0.91 per cent.
According to A. Shajahan, Director of Public Instruction, flashes of an improvement in strength, in the unaided sector, are seen only in Wayanad (where the total strength has gone up by 142, from last year’s 5,334 to 5,476 this year) and in Kasaragod (where the strength has gone up by 189 students).
There is no improvement anywhere in the aided sector, while in the government sector, only Kannur has shown a marginal increase of 0.45 per cent.
This year’s figures are more accurate than last year’s, since these are based on the Unique Identification (UID) Aadhaar numbers of the students. For those who are yet to get the UID number, based on their temporary enrolment identification (EID) numbers. This is against the system of head counts in schools, which gives way to several bogus figures.