The volume presents findings of a large scale national survey sponsored by ICSSR on Education Status of Scheduled Castes (SCs) in India. The study covers 98 districts across 22 states. Though the research is primarily focused on SCs, it also studies non-SC/STs as a control group. The findings are based on a survey of more than 23 thousand SC and over 9 thousand non-SC households, more than 23 thousand SC and around 8 thousand non-SC/ST students studying at different levels – upper primary, secondary, higher secondary and college – from government and private schools/colleges. The study focuses on three dimensions of the institutional education system: (1) the socio-economic and cultural background of the students which enable or hinder them to get access to educational institutions at different levels; (2) institutional setup and its function where the students enter, interact with teachers and other students and undergo the process of learning; and (3) aspirations and performance of the students in the examinations. The questions that the study probe are:
• What is the nature of educational institutions in terms of physical and human infrastructure?
• What is the perception and behaviour of teachers towards SC and non-SC/ST students in the schools and colleges?
• What kind of learning process do the students get and the problems they encounter in educational institutions?
• Whether the cultural values related to tribe/ethnic community/caste and ascribed status that the children learn in a family have been weakened in educational institutions which are expected to be modern and secular?
• What are the educational and career aspirations of SC students at different levels?
• Do they experience discrimination in educational institutions?
The data presented here would be valuable not only for further research, but also for policymakers, educationalists and social activists. The volume would be useful to all students of social sciences in general, and sociology, anthropology, development studies and policy sciences, in particular.
2. Background: Caste and Family
3. Upper Primary Students
4. Secondary and Higher Secondary Students
5. College Students