Private Schools in India : Experiences of Dalits and Adivasis

Private Schools in India : Experiences of Dalits and Adivasis

  • 29 Apr, 2022

At 12.7%, Scheduled Tribe children have the lowest rates of participation in private schooling among all communities followed by Scheduled Castes; this trend is accelerating risks widening the gap between the Dalit and Adivasi groups and Upper Castes. Sending even one child from the family to a private school will cost 27% and 23.3% of the total income of ST and SC households at the secondary level of education respectively. The language of merit, ability and hard work that dominates elite private schools is shaped by class, gender and caste. 37% of children from SCs faced harassment or abuse by either school staff or their peers during the pandemic.

This paper makes recommendations to regulate private schools to address discrimination against Dalits and Adivasis and strengthen the voice of parents. In the end, it is critical to strengthen the public education system by enhancing spending on education to 6% of GDP with a view of gradually ensuring all government schools eventually meet the norms of Kendriya Vidyalaya schools.

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