Back to: Contemporary India and Education – Unit 5
The words equity and equality are often confused with one another and used interchangeably, but it is essential to take note that they are two different terms having different meanings. In educational terms, equity refers to the situation where every student is facilitated with the necessary resources for the acquisition of the basic skills of reading, writing, and simple arithmetic. The educational success of the students is measured in society by its outcome, not the resources that have been invested in them. Educational equity refers to the educational system given to each student according to what he or she needs to perform at the desired level. According to Gunn (2018),
“Equality is the provision of equal treatment, access, and opportunity to resources and opportunities. Essentially, everyone gets the same thing, regardless of where they come from or what needs they might have.”
In educational institutions, equality is often related to access and outcomes. Equality ensures that every student has equal access to a high-quality education regardless of their social background. It also ensures that all students are accountable to the same standards and objectives without taking into account their circumstances, abilities, or experiences.
Issues of Equality and Equity in Education in India
Despite the government’s efforts to offer free and compulsory education, many people living in remote areas still ignore the need for equality and equity in education.
Lack of Coordination
There is a lack of coordination between the local community and the educational institutions which leads to issues in imparting equal access to education.
There is an air of indifferent attitude by the higher authorities which leads to a lack of effort in the inclusion of equality and equity in education.
Lack of Funds
There is an inadequacy of funds which leads to a lack of learning resources and materials that can facilitate equality of education.
Even though education may be free, there are still some expenses parents have to incur and those belonging to a poor social class may therefore refrain from sending their children to school.
Lack of Resources
Even with the government’s provision of learning resources, it continues to be inadequate for quality education.
Lack of Motivation
Those who belong to a poor socioeconomic economic background may not consider education to be important. They motivate their children to work instead of to become educated. This increases the gap of inequality.
These are the various issues existing in India when it comes to equality and equity in the education system.