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$500 m WB aid for RMSA a welcome step

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The decision by the World Bank to extend aid worth $ 500 million to the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), the ambitious secondary education project of the Government of India, is a welcome step. This will ensure that technology-enabled quality education is available, accessible and affordable to all students at the secondary level, i.e. Classes IX and X.

Aimed at gradual universalisation of secondary education, the project is designed to meet critical needs in secondary education. The goals are to expand secondary education, enhance its quality and equity, and to develop and evaluate innovative approaches. We do hope that this will pave the way for adoption of digital learning technologies to hasten the process and make secondary education universal.

Today, most of the economic and employment growth in India is taking place in skilled services like information technology, financial services, telecommunications and skill-intensive manufacturing, all of which require, at a minimum, a secondary education degree. Surveys show there has been a steady rise in the rates of return to secondary education, which indicates that demand for the types of knowledge and skills gained, is rising faster than supply.

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