Inclusive education: The panacea for uplifting literacy rate in Jharkhand
Nitish Kumar, Shweta Pandey
Reducing inequality is among one of the top priorities for nations globally. The fourth goal of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) emphasises “quality education”. While developed countries have had the required educational status for the past few decades, one of the key factors for their economic proliferation, the developing and underdeveloped nations have found their education structure and goals in flux. Countries in the global south have witnessed increasing global attention to ameliorate this educational inequality. This paper analyses the educational status of the state of Jharkhand in India and its 24 districts using the Geographical Information System (GIS). We find that districts with similar levels of literacy rate appear to be close to each other, which implies spatial inequality in access to education. We also find that in general, mineral-rich districts that offer better employment opportunities tend to have a higher literacy rate than the state’s average and vice versa. Drawing on to the arguments established in our analysis, we assert that inclusive education is crucial to holistically escalating the educational status of the state. Further, we advocate the role of teachers in providing an inclusive classroom environment. Our analysis reveals the lack of informed policy making and recommends policy intervention in underserved areas for equitable educational development in Jharkhand.