India has witnessed a marked improvement in female literacy, the Economic Survey said on Friday.
Though male literacy is still higher at 80.9 per cent than female literacy at 64.6 per cent, their increase has been 10.9 per cent compared to 5.6 per cent for males, the survey tabled in Parliament by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.
The survey also pointed out that the overall standard of education in India is below global standards. The Programme for International Students Assessment (PISA) which measures the knowledge and skills of children, who are 15 years of age, has rated Tamil Nadu and Himachal Pradesh as having higher rates of knowledge as compared to other states in the country.
There is a considerable scope for post-secondary education and training system, as well as for places to improve the proficiency of young people, it said.
The Padhe Bharat Badhe Bharat initiative to create a base for reading, writing and math fluency can be effective if the local administration is fully involved and sensitized, the survey said.
India has about 100 million young people in the age group of 15-18 years, the majority of whom could land up in the unorganised sector as there are educational and age requirements for entry into most vocational skills programmes.
There is a need for research into the type of knowledge or skills required to address this issue, it said.
The survey said that in order to build capacity in secondary schools at par with expanded primary enrolments, several schemes like the mid-day meal scheme, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan, Model School Scheme and Saakshar Bharat or Adult Education scheme have also been implemented in the country.