The pandemic has distorted education sector. Many people have abandoned workplace and migrated their native land. Millions of people are jobless and this has damaged the economy. The education sector has been affected as many children are out of schools. The closure of schools, colleges and other educational institutions has left the children shattered. The students are still uncertain of the challenges that are yet to arrive. The students are not being able to focus on their studies as due to the lack of interaction. The mode of ‘online education’ is a new phenomenon as the students do not use smartphones for the purpose of studies. Several students are out of education because of the digital divide. The online education is an advantage of the privileged classes, but the underprivileged classes cannot afford smartphones, laptops and other gadgets that can be used as an online mode of education. The widespread digital divide has reflected extremity. Some students are of the opinion that online education is less effective than the conventional mode of teaching. The interaction between the students is important as it helps the students to learn effectively and efficiently. The mode of examination has changed; online assessment and open book examination are in fashion. The uncertainty of the timeline has pressurized the students to get back on the track. Amidst the pandemic, the world has celebrated International Literacy Day on 8th Of September, 2020. The purpose of International Literacy Day (ILD) is to promote literacy to develop a sustainable environment for the generations to come. The ‘literacy’ reflects the dignity of a person and must be treated as a fundamental human right. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) declared the first International Literacy Day in 1966 at the general conference. This year, the theme was ‘Literacy teaching and learning in the COVID-19 crisis and beyond’. International Literacy Day (ILD) helps to understand the progress of the country.
According to the United Nations, Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) around 773 million people lack basic literacy skills. The advent of Coronavirus or COVID-19 has affected more than 91 per cent of the students and 99 per cent of the teachers. While calculating the literacy rate in India, Kerela has emerged as the most literate state in India with 99.2 per cent. The National Statistical Office (NSO) has conducted a survey in the country. The report stated that Kerela has been one of the states with the highest literacy rate. Delhi has stood second with 88.7 per cent of literacy, Uttrakhand has ranked third with 87.6 per cent of literacy. Himachal Pradesh has 86.6 per cent of literacy and Assam has stood 5th with 85.9 per cent of literacy.
The top 10 countries with high literacy rate are listed below:
- Kerela – 99.2%
- Delhi – 88.7%
- Uttrakhand – 87.6%
- Himachal Pradesh- 86.6%
- Assam- 85.9%
- Maharashtra- 84.8%
- Punjab- 83.7%
- Gujarat- 82.4%
- Tamil Nadu- 82.9%
- West Bengal- 80.5%
The National Statistical Office (NSO) has reported that the state of Andhra Pradesh has the worst literacy rate with 66.4 per cent. Rajasthan has stood in the second-worst position with 69.7 per cent of literacy rate. Bihar has 70.9 per cent of literacy rate. Telangana has 72.8 per cent of literacy rate. The state of Uttar Pradesh has 73 per cent of literacy rate and Madhya Pradesh has 73.7 per cent of literacy rate.
The Rural India Literacy rate is 73.5 per cent, while the literacy rate in Urban India is 87.7 per cent. The all India literacy rate by compiling the Urban and the rural figure is 77.7 per cent. The all India male literacy rate is 84.7 per cent and all India women literacy rate is 70.3 per cent. The literacy rate amongst male in Kerala has 97.4 per cent and the literacy rate amongst female is 95.2 per cent. The subtle gap between the male and the female literacy rate in Kerala is the smallest and shows an outstanding result.
In the wake of the coronavirus or COVID-19, many parents and stakeholders, heads of the organizational educations, Ministry of Education and so forth are deliberately discussing and debating over reopening of schools. Many schools, colleges have restored education through an online mode of learning. The extensive promotion of online education has reflected that the loss of education during the pandemic must be negotiated as much as possible. Many universities are conducting the online model of the examination. The National Testing Agency (NTA) has conducted the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE), the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) (UG) will be conducted on 13th Of September. The Supreme Court has ordered that the education of the children must not be hampered during the pandemic. The students must not deviate into something else. The examination will help them to restore their confidence.
In the census of 2011, any person ageing 7 and beyond with a capacity to read and write has been acknowledged as literate. If a person can only read but incapable to write, the respective person cannot be viewed as ‘literate’. The literacy rate contributes some inputs in the development of an individual; it brings social upliftment, population control, health, hygiene and many more. A literacy is correlated with the concepts of urbanization and globalization along with the touch of industrialization and commercialization. High literacy rate improves the shape of the economy.