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The girls of India: continuing inequality in primary schools explored. Poster for the IDS Lecture Series 2011 Social Justice and Development in the Global South , by : Daniel Calzada Vázquez 6485022 Vincent Beets 5978432. PROBLEMS Illiteracy (general population, 2011):

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The girls of India: continuing inequality in primary schools explored

Poster for the IDS Lecture Series 2011 SocialJustice and Development in the Global South, by:

Daniel CalzadaVázquez 6485022

Vincent Beets 5978432


Illiteracy (general population, 2011):

female 35%male 18%

Enrolmentratio: Grades 1-5 (primarylevel): 0.92to 1

Grades 6-8 (upperprimary): 0.84to 1

Higher drop-out ratesPercentageofgirls in the final examinationyearatprimarylevel: 36% (2001)

Different accordingtothestudent‘sgender, evenwhengirls’ perform at the same or at a better level than boys.



Greaterinvestment in boys' than in girls' education

Girls workmorehoursathometosupportthefamily.

Community level:

Child marriage

Seclusion of girls to preserve their ‘purity’


Scheduledcastes and tribes

Poverty, combinedwithdistance to school

School level:

Reproductionofgenderroles in programmes,

Teachers' andadministrators' behaviours

Curriculum seenassomethingstatic.

Organizationofspace, physicalseparation.

Lack ofinfrastructure, e.g. girls‘ toilets

State level:

Limited institutionalsupportfor


School as an instrumentofsocialcontrol.


Hindu and muslimtraditions



Technocraticlogic: “high-”and “low-status” knowledge

Male and femaleenrolment in primary schools in India: A 30-year comparison in the 20th century

Percentage of out-of-schoolchildrenbyagegroup (2005)

Source: Social and RuralReasearchInstitute, (2005), cited in: Bing Wu, Kin, P. Golschmidt, C. K. Boscardin & M. Azam (2011).

  • Awareness
  • The influences of traditional society in the education system should be acknowledged. Monitoring and impact assessment of gender equality strategies lacks support.
  • Support of independent schooling programmes
  • Informal or alternative schooling programmes (bridge courses) for bringing girls back to school have proven effective.
  • International NGOs
  • Collaboration between local and foreign organizations have shown potential to challenge gender inequalities through the acquisition of different perspectives about learning.
  • NO "western influence"
  • Ideas of womens' liberation should not be transmitted as intrinsecally "western". Connect these ideas with local values.
  • Infrastructure
  • Still more schools are needed, principally in rural areas. Basic minimum facilities for disadvantaged groups genders are needed, the access to school through roads and transportation facilities can still be improved.

Source: Self, S. & R. Grabowski (2003).


  • Bandyopadhyay, M. & R. Subrahmanian (2008): Gender Equity in Education: A Review of Trends and Factors, in: Create pathways to Access, Research monograph No. 18, Consortium for Research on Educational Access, Transitions and Equity, Sussex / New Delhi.
  • Bing Wu, Kin, P. Golschmidt, C. K. Boscardin & M. Azam (2011): Girls in India: Poverty, location, and socialdisparities, in: Lewis, Maureen & Marlaine Lockheed (eds.): Exclusion, Gender and Education: Case Studies from the Developing World, Washington, Center for Global Development, p. 119-143.
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  • Desai, S. (2007): Gender disparity in primary education, in: Milennium Development Goals, UN Chronicle 4/2007, pp. 44-45.
  • Farzana, Afridi (2010): Women’sempowermentandthegoalofparitybetweenthe sexes in schooling in India, in: Population Studies, Vol. 64, No. 2, 2010, pp. 131-145.
  • Gabler, Mette (2011): Searching for sexual revolutions in India: nongovernmental organisation-designed sex education programmes as a means towards gender equality and sexual empowerment in New Delhi, India, Sex Education.
  • Government of India (2011): Census 2011, Ch. 6: State of Literacy, p. 97-136, access under: .
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  • Self, S. & R. Grabowski (2010): Is there gender bias in participation in early childhood education programs in developing countries? Role of mother’s education. Journal of International Development 23, 909–925.
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  • Unterhalter, E. & ShushmitaDutt (2001): Gender, Education and Women's Power: Indian state and civil society intersections in DPEP (District Primary Education Programme) and MahilaSamakhya, Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 31:1, 57-73.
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