For the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Government in Punjab, Delhi schools have been nothing less than ideal. Ever since the party came to power in the State, it has been talking about opening a new chapter in education by following the “Delhi model of education”. But ideal, it now appears, is not perfect after all. For, Punjab has emerged as the top performer state in the nationwide learning outcome levels survey — National Achievement Survey (NAS)-2021.
As per the NAS report, released by the Union Education Ministry on Wednesday, Punjab has outsmarted Delhi in all subjects for all classes (III, V, VIII, and X) covered in the survey. In fact, Delhi has scored less than Punjab in all subjects, including English, in which Punjab stands third after Chandigarh and Goa for Class X. Moreover, Punjab’s average score in English for Class X is also 330 out of 500, against Delhi’s 321.
Across all classes, Punjab has consistently featured among the top-performing states with the highest mean score (average of the total marks that all students got in the particular subject) for almost all subjects across all classes.
Punjab has also scored more than the national average in all the subjects. That was not all! Punjab has also topped in the average score in 10 of the 15 categories, leaving behind other states including Delhi.
The national-level survey assesses the health of the school education system in the country by conducting an evaluation of children’s learning competencies in Classes III, V, VIII, and X with a cycle period of three years. The previous NAS was held in 2017.
The survey was conducted by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) — the Union Government's top advisor on the curriculum — in 22 languages. Children were tested on language, mathematics, and EVS for Class III and V; language, mathematics, science, and social science for Class VIII; and language, mathematics, science, social science, and English for Class X.
Punjab recorded the highest mean scores in the language in Class III at 355, while it scored the highest 339 in mathematics. On the other hand, Delhi emerged among the five states with the lowest mean score in mathematics.
For Class V, Punjab also has the highest scores among states in language and mathematics. In Class VIII also, Punjab tops with the highest mean score of 338 in language, and 297 in mathematics, while retaining the sop position in Science and Social Science also.
For class X, Punjab recorded the highest mean score with 288 out of 500 in modern Indian languages, followed by neighboring Haryana (284) and Delhi (283) in second and third place. In Mathematics for Class X, Punjab again topped the charts with a fairly healthy lead over other states in the mean score for mathematics. In social science, Punjab recorded the highest mean score with 270; while in English, Goa emerged as the top performer recording a mean score of 338, followed by Punjab (330) and Delhi (321).
The findings of the nationwide survey have put a big question mark on the AAP’s claims of having the “best education model” in the country, and its criticism of Punjab’s poor education infrastructure.
Notably, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann and also the state Education Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer, have all along been giving a push to implement the Delhi model of education in the state. AAP leaders, even after coming to power, have been highlighting the poor condition of the state government’s schools, while showering all praise on Delhi’s school infrastructure.
AAP leaders, including the Chief Minister, have been blaming the successive governments for their failure to improve the state’s education sector over all these years, while blaming the SAD, BJP, and the Congress for government schools’ dismal condition.
Moreover, Mann along with his team of officers and some Ministers have also visited Delhi’s schools. Later, during an interaction with school principals from across the State held recently in Ludhiana, Chief Minister had announced to soon implement Delhi’s model of education in Punjab by implementing decisions like sending teachers abroad for training.
The NAS, at the national level, tested 34.01 lakh students from 1.18 lakh schools from Class III, V, VIII, and X. As many 1.17 lakh students were tested from 3,656 schools, including government and private both, in Punjab.