Girls outnumber boys in community schools
This year’s nationwideSecondary Education Examinations-2075 (SEE) that was held from 24th March to April 4threportedly saw a higher number of girl examineesfrom community schools, while in the case of boy examinees, the number washigher from theprivate schools.
According to the National Examination Board (NEB), a total of 475,003 students were registered for this year’s SEE (i.e. Grade 10) exam, which included 236,445 boys and 238,558 girls.
Of the total girl examinees, largenumber came from community schools,whereas of the total boys, examinees from private schools were higher according to the data.
A total of 304,196 students appearedin the SEE from community schools while 170,807 students were from private schools. The number of girl students from private schools was significantly low in comparison to the number of boys taking SEE from private schools, as per NEB data.
The number of girls taking SEE from community schools is 181,807 whichis 53.44 percent of the total students of community schools. In comparison the number of girls appearing SEE from private schools was only 56,751 which makes 33.22 percent of the total number of students from private schools.
Thus,if we go by the widespread belief that private schools are providing a better education compared to community schools, this does in a way indicate that people are still hesitant to spend more on educating the girl child.
The figures indicate that government’s investment in public education and especially on girl empowerment is actually working- seeing higher number of girls appearing in SEE. However, from the other angle, people still seem to send their boy child to private schools and girls to community schools
Under Nepal’s education system, community schools are government-owned and students get free education with minimal fees as government bears the costs.In private schools, guardians have to pay high tuition fees and other charges. Despite higher fees private schools are,however, still the first choice of guardians, as they claim to provide better education compared to community schools.
Another positive aspect is that parents have undoubtedly started sending their daughters to school. The best part is, most daughters are now at least in schools rather than beingconfined to householdchores. However, people may argue that it is discriminatory as the education of a male child is given first priority by sending them to private schools and girls to community schools.
Despite the above figures on girls, in rural areas of the country, it is still a big problem and depressing to see even the modern parents not sending their girl child to school but forcing them to do household work.
At our homes, it’s good for both girls and boys to help parents with daily household chores during extra time away from studies, but it will amount to harassment and discrimination if parents treated this only as the duty of their daughter, not of son.
Some people claim that the poor performance by girls in SEE is due to such unequal treatment from parents. Last year, only 2.7 per cent of total girl examinees secured GPA 3.65 to GPA 4, while 6.6 per cent boys secured the same score.
Likewise, large number of girls secured below 2GPA. This indicates that though large number of girl examinees appear the SEE every year, higher number of boys get good grades in comparisonto girl students.
Educationexpert DrMana Prasad Wagle views that the private schools need to be closed gradually in order to end social discrimination in education. He also added that such discrimination will end along with development of guardian’s understanding.
This view was supported by the fact that the number of girl examinees in schools in the urban centers is higher this year.
Of the total 70,568 students appearing the SEE from Province 2, 27,041 were boys and 33,527 were girls. In Province 1, of the 83,818 examinees, 40,164 were boys and 43,654 were girls. Likewise, in Province 3, of the 160,002 students appearing the SEE altogether 52,880 were boys and 53,112 girls.
Education experts say educational sector needs a complete overhaul for a number of reasons. Such an overhaul must be based on well-thought out plans with explained potential outcomes. The government, while appreciating the contribution of the private schoolsand its impressive academic attainment and retention of quality education seekers within the country, should continue to focus on improving community school’s education and potentials too.
At community schools, all teachers, school management committee, and other stakeholders must also think of their complete overhaul so as to attract all guardians for quality education, just like the private ones.