Education in India

India is divided into 28 States, and although the national government suggests education policies on a periodic basis, each state government has quite a lot of freedom when it comes to instating programmes.

In each state there are three kinds of school which follow the state curriculum: government schools (which typically charge quite low fees) private schools (high fees) and Grant-in-Aid schools, where fees are subsidised by the government so that the children of poorer families might attend.

There a four levels to the schooling system in India:

Lower Primary, Ages 6 – 10 (Subdivided into five ‘standards’)

Upper Primary, Ages 11 – 12 (Subdivided into two ‘standards’)

High, Ages 13 – 15 (Subdivided into three ‘standards’)

Higher Secondary, Ages 17 – 18 (Subdivided into two ‘standards’)

Until the end of high school students learn a common curriculum (although there are some differences depending on the regional dialect). Three languages are learnt by all children in the majority of regions, English and Hindi and the regional dialect.

Once in higher secondary school children are able to specialise their subject choices more.

Central Schools/Kendriya Vidyalayas have been established in most urban areas of India. As they follow a common schedule the children of central government employees, who may have to relocate on a regular basis, can transfer between schools with no disruption to their education. In these schools all subjects apart from Social Studies (which is made up of History, Geography and Physics) are taught in English. Social Studies is taught in Hindi.

Private/international schools

International schooling in India is improving all the time, although in some areas demand does exceed supply.

If your child doesn’t speak the local dialect you may find international schooling the best option, but do bear in mind that it can be quite pricey.

Children can attend international schools on a daily basis or board on a weekly/term basis. Lessons are predominately taught in English and the curriculum is typically geared towards the International Baccalaureate (IB) and International General Certificate of Education (IGCSE) – both qualifications are easily transferable overseas.