Appeal to participate, in order to IMPACT education in
As citizens of
, each one of us the right to monitor the work of the
government and we also have the responsibility to help to
make our society equitable, efficient, and effective. Every
Indian man, woman and child deserves a vibrant democratic
society based on Izzat, Imandari, and Insaaf.
Every Indian wants
to be not only a literate but also an educated country.
Every Indian child deserves an equal opportunity to build a
good life. Every Indian pays regular taxes to provide
elementary education to the children of
. Every Indian also pays 2% cess levied by the Government of
India on all central taxes.
Pratham appeals to individuals,
organizations, institutions, and businesses to join an
effort to create a citizens’ Annual Status of Education
. In August 2004, with the help o f citizens and NGOs, we
led a survey of 19 districts in 17 states of
. We found that percentage of children enrolled in schools
is very high (85-90%+) in most states especially in the 6-10
age group. But, in many states, 50% children in Std 2 and
above, going to government schools, cannot read even simple
sentences. 60% children cannot do simple subtraction, leave
alone multiplication and division.
For the first time, a number was put to
status of basic learning in the country. Pratham did not
stop at this analysis, but has been actively working with
various state governments to change this reality. We are
willing to do more.
ASER is not a negative idea, it is
linked with a constructive satyagraha to insist on the right
of the citizens to participate in the functioning of the
government. We believe that good work done by governments,
and there is a lot of it, deserves to be applauded. But
governments must also take outcome oriented steps to improve
performance of schools.
ASER is an annual effort. It will go on
until December 2010 – the deadline for achieving quality
universal elementary education declared by Government of
India. What you can do
Participate in the survey. Nearly 18,000 villages
will be surveyed across 600 districts of
charge of surveying a district – about 20-30 randomly
minimum Rs. 10,000 towards cost of survey of one district.
Contribute Rs. 500 towards survey of one village.
(Every contributor will get a receipt with an 80G tax
exemption certificate and a Village/ District Report Card of
a survey she/ he supports).
Spread the word, before, during, and after the
Help in any other way.
See www.pratham.org for details or
write us at email@example.com
The first ASER will survey only rural areas. Preparatory,
mobilization period: Oct 2 – 30.
Training and survey: Phase I: Nov 6 – 25, Phase II: Nov 26
– Dec 10.
Analysis and writing: Dec 11 – Dec 30.
Simultaneous release: in
and state capitals, Jan 12 – 16.
A. ASER will attempt to rank every district, and every
state, based on some basic indicators such as:
- What percentage of children can
read, write, and do basic arithmetic?
- What percentage of villages have a primary school?
- What percentage of villages have easy access to an
upper primary school?
- Are enough teachers appointed? Are they in
school? Are they teaching?
- What is the status of school infrastructure
including rooms, toilets, drinking water, etc. for which
government sanctions funds?
- Do children get textbooks? On time?
- Is a hot cooked mid-day meal served every
- Have teachers received funds for teaching
- Are these funds being used?
- Is a village body (education committee,
parent teacher association etc.) active in managing the
B. There will be a National Report.
There will also be a State Report for every state. State
reports will be made available in regional languages. Simple
one-two page summaries of district level reports will be
widely disseminated through participating partners.
C. Every year attempt will be made to
track the progress of each district against previous years.
D. Other indicators may be added in
later but the simple and rapid nature of the survey will be
maintained in order to encourage maximum participation of
A. Sampling: A team of sampling experts will decide the best
scientific random sampling method and sample size to use to
generate a representative sample of a district. Villages to
be surveyed will be selected centrally. In case a
substitution of villages to be surveyed is needed, the
central team will have to be consulted.
1. Common survey forms in English to be
prepared and dispatched by Oct 20 – 23. Detailed survey
2. Three day workshop in
Oct 20 – 23. Two-three persons per state (including state
1. Identification of district personnel and block personnel:
Oct 2 – Oct 20 (continue if needed).
2. Translations of forms and instructions in regional
languages: Oct 20 – Oct 25.
3. Training of district resource persons including practice
survey: Oct 26 – Oct 31 (BEFORE Diwali).
1. Identification of block and village level volunteers:
Phase I – Oct 10 – Oct 25. Phase II – Nov 6 – Nov
2. Training and practice at district
for district and block level personnel close to
identification dates – almost simultaneous.
C. Survey - period:
villages will be surveyed on two consecutive days: Sunday
and Monday (or another working day).
On Sunday : the volunteers test children’s reading,
writing, and arithmetic learning in the community.
On Monday : the volunteers will visit the school, preferably
with the Sarpanch or members of the Village Education
MUST involve villagers in the testing and survey. Involving
sarpanch and/or members of village education committee (or
equivalent body) is essential.
dates possible are:
1. Phase I : Nov 6, 7, Nov 13, 14, Nov
2. Phase II: Nov 27-28, Dec 4-5, Dec 11-12.
All Survey data should be back at state
capitals within one week of survey so that data entry can
completed within one week of securing data.
will be the lead organization in all states except J&K,
North-Eastern States, West Bengal, Jharkhand, Orissa, Andhra
Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and
. In these states, Pratham will attempt to find
state-level partners to organize and execute surveys and
provide technical assistance. If possible, an assistance of
Rs. 10,000 per district will be made available depending
upon success of Pratham’s fundraising. Partners at
district and state level shall be encouraged to raise own
funds if possible.
team of at least two persons will be created at each
district, who will in turn find about 6-8 persons located at
3-4 blocks spread around the district so that they can
organize and execute surveys in the randomly selected
block-level teams will be critical and will have to be
trained through some actual practice on how to survey. These
teams will need to mobilize another 2-3 volunteers per block
per person so as to cover 20-30 villages. Of course, the
block team may itself decide to split and survey the
villages. It is very crucial to keep the costs down and
level of local ownership of the survey high. It is hoped
that this organisation structure will help in this regard.
Pratham leaders coordinating surveys in different
Usha Rane: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mumbai-Pune: Maharashtra, Chattisgarh,
, MP, (with partners in Orissa)
Phone: 020-2528-6702, 6215, Mobile: 94230-05412
Vijay Kulkarni: email@example.com
Karnataka (with partners in AP and Tamil Nadu)
Rukmini Banerji: firstname.lastname@example.org
: UP, Bihar, Haryana,
, J&K, Uttaranchal, Himachal, (with partners in WB,
Jharkhand, North East)
Phone: 011-2671-6083, 6084, Mobile: 98105-36145
Aditya Natraj: email@example.com
, (Jaipur) Rajasthan
Finance and Accounts
All financial requirements at the national and state level
to be met by Pratham units through their rural program
budgets and NOT through donations received from individuals
for ASER. Donations of Rs. 10,000 per district or Rs. 500
per village are to be strictly used for district and
sub-district expenses only.
The rough division of Rs. 10,000 per district
could be as follows:
i. Travel cost for village survey
volunteers @ Rs. 100 per village for about 30 villages = Rs.
ii. Travel and out of pocket cost for block level persons
(about 6-8 per district) @ Rs. 500 per person = Rs. 4,000.
iii. Travel and out of pocket cost for district level
persons including any expense for photocopying, phones, etc.
= Rs. 1,500.
iv. Travel and out of pocket expenses for Pratham (or
state-level partner) resource/ training person(s) going to
district = Rs. 1500.
v. As far as possible volunteers traveling to districts
should stay with local hosts and avoid all hotel and such
The financial needs and schedule of payments to
be made to partner organizations (state level or district
level) will be discussed with each partner by state or
national level units of Pratham. These discussions should be
over by Oct 25.
made to partner organizations are grants or donations given
by Pratham and a receipt in return is enough along with the
survey data in prescribed forms. Pratham does not need
detailed vouchers or expenditure reports. The individual
organizations may maintain these for their records in case a
question arises at a later date.
Pratham units are also handling the district level
organization, money needed to reimburse travel etc for block
and village level participants should be made available at
the time of the survey. Payments should be made to village
surveyors as soon as they hand in data and it is scrutinized
at the block level. The block level persons should have cash
and vouchers so that they can take signatures of people who
receive funds. The district level expenses related to
photocopying, and snacks/food for training meetings need to
be accounted for with bills. However, tickets or bills for
travel, tea etc are difficult to keep and often not
available. Hence, a simple voucher for out of pocket
expenses should do.
state office will maintain a separate account of expenses
incurred for ASER. If possible, we shall publish the
accounts as a part of the report.