New Delhi: Lengthy school closures due to the pandemic have undone years of gradual gains in learning levels among India’s school-age students, with a major education report released on Wednesday reporting elementary reading and maths skills comparable to pre-2012 levels.
Nearly 43% of class V students tested by education non-profit Pratham Education Foundation could read a class II level text and 26% could divide numbers.
In 2012, the figures were 47% and 25%, respectively. Across ages, gains in reading skills were washed away more than arithmetic.
Bihar, Jharkhand and Manipur were among the few outliers who did better on class V students’ basic reading ability. First held in 2005, Pratham’s Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) is a large-scale rural survey that tracks children’s reading and numerical abilities.