As many as 26.1% of the children living in rural areas of the country did not have access to smartphones for their online classes, the Annual Status of Education Report (Rural) 2021 survey has showed.

“Expanding smartphone availability in the household does not automatically translate into children’s access to a smartphone,” the survey, released on Friday, stated.

Of the total 75,234 students surveyed across 17,184 villages, only 27% had full access to smartphones at their homes, while 47% had partial access.

The report noted that children studying in Classes 1 and 2 were more likely to be deprived of access to smartphones. Only 33% of students of Classes 1 and 2 had received academic material from the school and only 28.5% were in touch with teachers, the survey showed.

The report added added that 17% students studying in Classes 9 and 10 did not have access to smartphones at home in 2021.

Source: Annual Status of Education Report (Rural) 2021.

Government school admissions

Enrollment of students in government schools increased to 70.3% from 65.8% in 2021, according to the latest Annual Status of Education Report.

“As the reasons for this increase, 40% [of the respondents] said that no studies were going on in private schools, 15% mentioned migration, 62% cited a shift from private schools because of financial distress, and about 50% ascribed it to the free facilities in government schools,” the report said.