Friday, 22 August 2014

School toilets in India: Statewise Comparision

Narendra Modi, the most popular prime minister in India in about three decades, delivered his maiden independence speech from the ramparts of red fort on 15 August. The speech, delivered extempore, was memorable for a number of reasons.  Instead of talking in abstract terms and eloquent visions, he surprised one and all by talking about the most elementary and banal things related to day to day life of the common Indian men. One of the things he dwelt upon at length was related to cleanliness, hygiene, and toilets. Indian public places, even those in the so called metro cities are unfortunately indescribably dirty. But again, instead of talking in jargon, Modi set a simple goal: to have toilets in each and every government school in India. Unfortunately again, many of the government schools are devoid of this basic amenity, and is one of the big reasons that many students, particularly girls, stay away from schools in rural areas.

After the speech, the human resource ministry, taking quick action, put up the complete list of all schools in India, along with the data about how many of them lack toilets completely of separately for boys and girls. The data for toilets can be accessed at this website. The population data has been taken from wikipedia.

The above list is a good indicator about the development index of every state. In the above list, I have added the data of population of each state, and computed the ratio of schools, populations, and toilets without schools. Also, the data for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana has been combined in the same state, as population data for them were not available to me separately.

 The best performers
The following states had toilets in all the schools!
a) Lakshadweep b) Daman & Diu c) Pondicherry d) Delhi e) Chandigarh 

All of them are union territories, and are not large in size. Despite, kudos for showing everything is not lost in India.

B) States/UT with maximum number of schools to population ratio:
If a state has larger population, it should have more number of schools. Computing the number of schools to total population may give an idea about the teacher-student ratio. Meghalaya was found to have the highest ratio, and all other states were normalized with respect to its ratio. Hence, Meghalaya has shown to be the highest ratio of 1. The top 10 states in this regard are:

States with best
Ratio States with worst
1) Meghalaya (Best) 1 1) Chandigarh 0.05
2) Arunachal Pradesh 0.94 2) Delhi 0.07
3) Himachal Pradesh 0.85 3) Kerala 0.07
4) Mizoram 0.8 4) Pondicherry 0.14
5) Chhattisgarh 0.72 5) Daman & Diu 0.15
6) Jammu And Kashmir 0.71 6) Tamil Nadu 0.2
7) Uttaranchal 0.67 7) Andhra Pradesh 0.21
8) Assam 0.62 8) Gujarat 0.22
9) Madhya Pradesh 0.61 9) Maharashtra 0.23
10) Sikkim 0.55 10) Haryana 0.23

The interesting thing about above ratio is, Chandigarh, Kerala, Delhi, all three have the worst ratio of schools, but these places are supposed to have good education in schools. It will be interesting to actually investigate the further effect of this ratio.

The north-eastern states figure prominently in the best ratio of schools per population. Hope the bigger and central states learn something from these places.

The worst performers:
Now we take a look at the best and worst performers in the number of dysfunctional toilets. The data shared by the ministry lists the number of schools with no toilets for boys, with no toilet for girls, dysfunctional toilets for boys and for girls. To get a simple picture, I have added the number of schools with absent toilets and dysfunctional toilets, for boys and girls separately. The total (dysfunctional+non-existent) toilets for boys and girls are very closely similar, so for the sake of convenience, I am presenting the results on the basis of data of boys toilet.

States with minimum
boys toilets per school
Best Performers
Ratio States with maximum
boys toilets per schools
Worst Performers
1) Lakshadweep 0 1) Arunachal Pradesh 0.63
2) Daman & Diu 0 2) Meghalaya 0.6
3) Pondicherry 0 3) Assam 0.46
4) Delhi 0 4) Bihar 0.42
5) Chandigarh 0 5) Jammu And Kashmir 0.41
6) Karnataka 0.01 6) Odisha 0.39
7) Andhra Pradesh 0.01 7) Mizoram 0.34
8) Maharashtra 0.04 8) West Bengal 0.3
9) Gujarat 0.04 9) Chhattisgarh 0.24
10) Kerala 0.05 10) Jharkhand 0.22

Gujarat and Kerala figure in the top 10 performers in this regard. In the worst performers category, the north-eastern states, which came out on top in the list of maximum school to population ratio, unfortunately they come on top in this regard also. Among the large states, Bihar, West Bengal take the top positions.
Honestly, I expected UP to be in this list as well, but it was a pleasant surprise that UP's performance is very good in the situation of toilets, and only 6% of its schools are without or with dysfunctional toilets.

Unique position of Bihar:
Combining the two data above has unfortunately put Bihar in a unique special distinction: It is the only state which has a worse dysfunctional toilet ratio, as compared to its number of schools per population. All other states, from the worst to best performers in any category, have a better ratio of schools per population than its dysfunctional toilets.
The above statistics are an interesting indicator to the state of education in different states. I hope that the initiative taken by Narendra Modi will lead to fully functional toilets in all the schools. 
The data for the above analysis can be downloaded from here :.xls format, .pdf format, .ods format.

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