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India sees more female school teachers than men for the first time

By Tenzin Norzom
July 05, 2021, Updated on : Mon Jul 05 2021 11:46:15 GMT+0000
India sees more female school teachers than men for the first time
The country is now home to 49.2 lakh female teachers and 47.7 lakh male teachers.
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Female teachers in schools outnumbered their male colleagues for the first time in India, as revealed by the Unified District Information on School Education report for 2019-20. 


The country is now home to 49.2 lakh female teachers and 47.7 lakh male teachers, up from 35.8 lakh female teachers and 42.4 lakh male teachers in 2012-13. 


However, most of the women teachers are concentrated in pre-primary level as the report also shows that male teachers (with over 1 lakh women teachers to 27,000 men) are more prevalent from upper primary level onwards. 

Gender ratio in teacher workforce

Number of teachers (in lakh) by gender, all India 2012-13 to 2019-20 (Source: Unified District Information on School Education report)

While primary grade level has the most balanced gender ratio of teachers with 19.6 lakh women and 15.7 lakh male teachers, few notable states like Kerala, Delhi, Meghalaya, Punjab, and Tamil Nadu has women outnumbering male teachers even in the higher grades as well.


These teachers cater to nearly 26.5 crore students of pre-primary to higher secondary level from different socio-economic backgrounds in more than 15 lakh schools across India, making the Indian school education system one of the largest in the world. 


Projecting the total enrolment of students in 2019-20, it states 13.01 crore boys and 12.08 girls got into primary to higher secondary levels of school education. 


Further, the report notes that the Gender Parity Index (GPI) has been favourable to the girls at all levels of school education, with improvements most pronounced at the higher secondary level.


The sudden shift to online classes have brought unprecedented challenges to students and teachers, especially those hailing from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.


According to an online survey conducted by Learning Spiral, as much as 84 percent of teachers said they face difficulties in adapting to teaching virtually. For two out of every five teachers, the difficulties spring from not having the right devices and equipment to teach online. In addition to tech accessibility and adaptability, maintaining discipline and figuring out etiquette during online class are also other challenges.


Edited by Anju Narayanan

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