Across India, 10.9% of government elementary schools had only one teacher across grades and 35.7% of schools didn’t have a female teacher, according to a World Bank analysis of 2012-13 data across nine states from the the District Information System for Education (DISE).
Still, the percentage of women in the teaching workforce has increased, the study found. There were 3.4 million women teachers, making up 46% of the elementary teaching workforce across India, up from 1.3 million (36%) in 2003–04.
In 2012-13, Jharkhand had the highest proportion of schools without a female teacher (55.9%), followed by Madhya Pradesh (54.3%) and Rajasthan (53.3%), the data show.
This could be because of unstated norms, the study said. For example, in Rajasthan, mostly only male teachers are posted as headmasters of co-educational schools and female teachers as headmistresses of girls-only schools. Such practices could impact career progress opportunities of women or specific social groups, the study said.
Rajasthan had the highest proportion of schools with one teacher (19.6%), followed by Madhya Pradesh (18.6%) and Jharkhand (15.6%), the data show. This suggests that a single teacher might be teaching more than one grade which could adversely impact learning.
(Shah is a writer/editor with IndiaSpend and FactChecker.)