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Women Education in India

Women education in India today is racing ahead at a far greater pace than in the last decade. Efforts are on to improve the literacy rate through government educational schemes. As the literacy late is lower than men, statistics shown that even from the few that are enrolled several girls drop out. The reasons reported by agencies subscribe it to inadequate school facilities e.g. sanitation besides shortage of female teachers and curriculum presentations of females as weak and helpless. Since 1989 a new scheme viz Mahila Samakhya Scheme has been introduced especially in rural areas of Jharkhand, Andhra Pradeshin Assam, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Gujarat and Karnataka. The budgeted allocation in 2007-08 was 370 million rupees for covering 83 districts of 21,000 villages under this scheme. While women in India are making history in several spheres of industry, space and civil sectors the country salutes thousands of selfless, hidden women who render education to the rural masses of India giving importance to education of women in India. Importance of Women Education in India

Women education in India is reaping high dividends to society and country with the little investment made through girl child education. It is said that to educate the girl child amounts to educating a family. It is the educated woman that brings up the family by educating her children. One success story 2010 is that of the toppers of the CBSE Board this year being girls, as per the CBSE results published on 21st May. However though efforts have been made in some areas the country has still a long way to go until female literacy is on par with male literacy rates in India. At present the adult literacy rate of females is 71% of male literacy rate. Enrolment and attendance is 96% of the male attendance rate in primary schools. With regard to secondary schools the women's rate is 83% of the male enrollment rate. To reduce the rate of female illiteracy by half, a new mission has been mooted viz. the Saakshar Bharat Mission for Female Literacy. Women in the church have been greatly responsible for education of women in India especially in the rural and remote areas of the country as also in the cities. Thousands of diocesan schools in the country have lent a hand in offering education especially in the remote areas as much as in the cities of India.

History of Women Education in Ancient India

It is believed that women in ancient India enjoyed education in the Vedic period. Patanjali in his works suggests that women had education during the beginning of the Vedic age. Maitreyi and Gargi are mentioned in the Rig Ved and Upanisads. However the decline began from the 5 century BC with Smritis and further in the medieval ages with the purdah system, child marriages etc restricting women from equal status with men. The Bhakti movement questioned some of the forms of oppression amd traditions like sati, jauhar and devadasi have been banned. The Constitution of India guarantees the right to equality to all Indian women without discrimination. The literacy rate before independence was 2-6% rose in 1961 to 15.3% and 50% by the year 2001. The National Literacy for Women made use of female tutors in villages yet with the early marriages, secondary school drop out outs continued. According to a recent survey in India it was found that the mother's educational level inversely corresponds to the infant mortality rate. Hence the lack of an educated population could be an obstacle to the growth and economic development of the country. While female infanticide still exists in rural parts of India, several brave women have fought against the evils of killing the girl child and bride burning in India.

Women Education in India today

Kerala and Mizoram are the only states in India that have achieved universal female literacy rates. The improvement in social and economic status of women is said to be one of the reasons for literacy. In cities the literacy rate is almost equal between girls and boys in the country. However the rate in rural areas continues to be less than the boys. Hence 40% of the centers under NFE, non formal education programs are set apart for women. According to statistics of women education in India today 0.3 million NFE centers have provided education to 0.12 million girls out of 7.42 million children. However in tribal areas there is not much of a gender bias as compared to all other castes, tribal community statistics show lower male ratio inspite of much low income, literacy, education and other facilities. Several efforts are being made towards women education and empowerment. The government is taking steps to increase the rate of women education and employment. Students preparing for women education essay can find details and information on importance of women education, women education today, women education in ancient India on several websites of education.

NGOs for Women

Several non governmental organisations NGOs have been instrumental in promoting women education, health and other important aspects necessary for women in India. Missionary schools continue to offer yeoman service in hundreds of schools in the country. Diocesan social service centers offer education opportunities in health education, saving schemes, and income generation. These non governmental organisations work for the promotion of women's rights to health, education and equality status in India. Chetanalaya in Delhi is an NGO that offers non-formal education to empower women in several spheres such as health, income-generation, saving schemes etc. The UNICEF as well as other international organizations contribute towards quality education of women in India. The Jhabua district saw 22 mobile schools offering formal education through tents to tribal and migrant people of the district. 3,600 child laborers were brought to mainstream education in Tamil Nadu with the help of UNICEF support. The NGOs that work for women empowerment in India are several, as they assist in women education against the prevalent evils in society viz. the dowry system, violence against women, gender bias etc. Several Mahila Mandals also empower women through offering women

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