More than 40 per cent of the secondary school boys and slightly over 39 per cent of girls dropped out from schools in Karnataka in 2013-14, placing the State in the second position in a government list of school dropouts in country.
The list, however, was topped by Odisha, where 50.09 per cent boys and over 49.62 per cent girls dropped out between Class 9 and Class 10, according to the latest data with the Human Resource Development ministry.
The data, collected by the National University for Educational Planning and Administration under the unified district information system for education (U-DISE) project, indicates that most of the states witnessed a high dropout rate of students at the secondary level in 2013-14, compared with the primary level.
A comparison of U-DISE data indicates an increase, though marginal, in the percentage of students who dropped out at the secondary and the higher secondary level from 2012-13 to 2013-14, raising questions on the effectiveness of the efforts being taken by the authorities to retain children in schools.
But the trend is more worrying for Karnataka as the U-DISE data indicates that the State witnessed an average dropout of 19.47 per cent boys at higher secondary level in 2013-14, the highest in the country in 2013-14, while its secondary schools saw an average exit of 40.70 per cent boys and 39.07 per cent girls between Class IX and Class X in the same year.
The percentage of girls dropping out at the higher secondary level in Karnataka in 2013-14 also came at 11.26, which placed the State in the second position on the list of the states witnessing student dropouts.
In most of the states, the dropout rate of students ranged between 9 per cent and 50.09 per cent at the secondary school level, while it remained between 6 per cent and 19.47 per cent at the higher secondary levels.