Home Education Pry schools decreased by 18,000 in 2-yr
Education - August 23, 2023

Pry schools decreased by 18,000 in 2-yr

Staff Correspondent: The number of primary schools in the country has decreased by more than 4,000 in a span of one year and by over 18,000 in two years.
However, despite the decrease in schools, the number of students has increased by about 450,000 within a year. This was revealed at the Annual Primary School Census 2022 published recently by the Directorate of Primary Education (DPE).
The latest census brought out pictures of primary education in the country for the last several years.
The report finds out that apart from some negative aspects, the primary education in the country saw some positive trends including decrease in the number of dropouts.
Another report of DPE (The National Student Assessment 2022), however, reveals a grim picture that a large number of students are failing to acquire the skills and competence they are supposed to according to their grades.
Almost half of the students of Class III and V are not competent enough in Bangla. A total of 61 per cent of the third graders and 70 per cent of the fifth graders don’t have proficiency in math appropriate for their grades.
The census revealed that the number of primary schools in the country decreased to 114,539 in 2022 from 1,18,891 in 2021 and 133,002 in 2020. Of the 114,539 schools, the number of government primary schools is 65,566. That shows the number of primary schools decreased by 18,463 of which most are non-government primary schools.
DPE’s additional director general Uttam Kumar Das toldthe number had decreased mainly due to closure of the learning center of a non-government organisation.
He said no government primary school was shut by this time.
The census found that the number of total enrollments from pre-primary to fifth grade in 2022 was 2,05,46,091 compared to 2,00,90,057 in 2021. This shows that the number of enrolled students increased by 4,56,034 within a year. The number of total enrolments was 2,15,51,691 in 2020.
As per the latest census, the number of girl students is 1,05,21,140.
The government primary schools have a total of 362,709 teachers, of which 65 per cent are female. It can be noted that a 60 per cent quota is reserved for female candidates in the primary level. Of the total teachers, 237,625 received training at Primary Teachers Institutes. Ratio of students to teachers is 33:1 in government primary schools.
Dropout rate decreases
Dropout in primary level was once a major concern. The dropout rate was around 40 per cent back in 2010. The dropout rate has consistently been decreasing. According to the latest census, the dropout rate decreased to 13.95 per cent from 14.15 in 2021.
The number of children with disabilities enrolled is also increasing. In 2022, disabled children enrolled was nearly 119,000 which was 99,961 in 2021. Of the children with disabilities, more than 44 per cent were girls.
The government closed all educational institutions due to Covid pandemic on 17 March in 2020. The educational institutions reopened 18 months later in September 2021. The authorities had to close the educational institutes again as Covid cases surged.
A research by National Curriculum and Textbook Board (NCTB) found that the fifth graders were the worst sufferers of the protracted school closure. Learning loss increased for the students of class V in English, Bangladesh andBissho Porichoy (World Affaris) subjects and in Bangla for the students of class III.
The fifth graders’ learning English has dropped by 12.5 per cent in post-covid period in comparison with pre-Covid period due to school closure.
Learning loss of the same graders in Bangladesh and Bissho Porichoy subjects is 16.5 per cent while by around 15 per cent in Bangla for third graders.
When asked, Brac University’s emirates professor Manzoor Ahmed toldthat many students either dropped out or shifted to other schools due to Covid. It should be investigated properly why the number of primary schools is decreasing and action should be taken accordingly.

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