New Delhi: Female teachers in schools and educational institutes have outnumbered male colleagues in India, as revealed by the U-DISE (Unified District Information on School Education) Report for 2019-20. This has happened for the first time since independence.
These statistics are from U-DISE 2019 report. The report is released annually by the Department of School Education and Literacy under the Union ministry of education.
According to this report, currently, India has 49.2L Female teachers and 47.7 lakh Male teachers. This is an increase from 35.8 lakh female teachers and 42.4 lakh, male teachers, back in 2012-13. The report for 2020 is due as the survey was not conducted and the data of 2019 was not published for 2 years.
The report indicates many interesting statistics. Most of the women teachers are established and teaching in primary level schooling. Whereas, male teachers are more prevalent in secondary schooling. The state that has employed the highest number of women teachers was Uttar Pradesh with 6.42 lakh females teaching in schools. The list was followed by Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra with 4.22 lakh and 3.75 lakh women teachers respectively.
The report also states primary educational institutes induce a more balanced gender ratio of 19:15 teachers with 19.6 lakh women to 15.7 lakh male teachers. The states like Meghalaya, Kerala, Delhi, Punjab and Tamil Nadu have women outnumbering male teachers in higher educational institutes as well.
These teachers are from different social and economic backgrounds in more than 15 lakh schools and they nurture about 26.5 crore students of the Indian Education system, including private and small schools, making the Indian school education system one of the largest across the globe.
The report notes Gender Parity Index (GPI) has been more favorable to the girls rather than boys at all levels of school education due to improvements at the higher secondary level. Admissions of the students have gone up. The projected total admissions of students in 2019-20 are around 25.09 crores. This includes 13.01 crore boys and 12.08 Crore girls from primary to secondary levels of school education.
The report cites various reasons are mentioned behind women outnumbering men in the education system. One major reason is work-social life balance.
Teaching is seen as a comfortable, stable job with various tasks and subjects to perform. Women are ambitious and positive in life, they want to manage their household and tend to opt for teaching as a profession, most probably because of the school timings. This makes it feasible and provides time to work and look out for family too.
The Ministry of Education Quoted “During the survey, it was found that the difference in teaching styles is also another reason for schools recruiting more female teachers. The difference in behavior, adopting new ideas, implementing subjects and open towards their students being some of them.”
“Male and female teachers behave differently in the classroom and events. Similarly, students also respond differently to their teachers’ behaviors. It is also quite possible that what is acknowledge to be gender differences is not the real factor. It can be different teaching styles.” An expert said.
Male teachers, on this note, are considered more dominant, rigid, rough, and strict. They focus more on competition, challenge, attitude, and individuality whereas female teachers focus on soft teaching, harmony, and interdependence of students.
In Secondary classes and University level, both male and female teachers are differentiated based on subjects and teaching. They also pay different salaries in India for primary and secondary school teachers. This is not the case in other countries. All teachers, regardless of economic level, require similar qualifications and share similar pay.
Male teachers in India prefer to teach in upper classes, colleges, and universities because they get paid more in subjective and practical courses, especially in central and state government institutes.
Suddenly, due to the pandemic, heavy shift to online classes has brought unprecedented challenges to students and teachers, especially those hailing from economically disadvantaged backgrounds who are affected worst. The impact of the pandemic will be seen in the U-DISE report 2021.
According to the online surveys conducted by an NGO Learning Spiral. The survey indicates, more than 84 percent of teachers report that they face difficulties in adapting to teaching virtually. For every 2 out of 5 teachers, the difficulties start from not having the right devices and equipment to teach online.
In addition to tech accessibility and adaptability, maintaining discipline and figuring out curtsy during online classes are also other challenges. The admission rate of the students is suspected to fall too due to the closure of schools and the impact on the economic status of individuals.
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