Rural students still lag behind their urban counterparts in the pass rate and GPA-5 in Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) and equivalent examinations.
This year’s HSC results published on Wednesday show 0-50 percent pass rate in many educational institutions in rural areas and this trend has been continuing for the last several years.The gap between rural and urban educational institutions continues to widen as most of the urban ones give an outstanding performance in HSC exams while the bulk of failure goes to rural institutions.
Educationists and education board officials have blamed the lack of facilities like competent teachers, laboratories, libraries, and commercialisation of education in rural colleges.
Rural students cannot afford coaching, private tuition and do not get better guidance from parents at home and teachers in classrooms while they are not getting supervision from competent teachers on how to tackle creative method questions in exams, they said.
This year the pass rate in combined results is 73.93 per cent and a total of 47,286 students secured GPA 5 under ten education boards.
Statistic of results shows that 13,894 out of 47,286 achievers of GPA-5 in eight general education boards were from Dhaka city alone, as the colleges of Dhaka were well-equipped with better facilities.
According to the results, under Dhaka board, highest 86.48 per cent students from the capital city, 69.99 per cent from Dhaka district, 70.65 per cent from Gazipur, 73.15 per cent from Narayanganj and 78.5 per cent from Narsingdi passed in the HSC exams.Besides, under the same board, lowest 52.07 per cent students from Rajbari, 54.93 per cent from Faridpur and 58.98 per cent from Madaripur passed the exams.
The highest 15.45 percent examinees achieved GPA-5 in Dhaka city alone. The lowest percentage of GPA-5 achievers was in Jamalpur — 0.48 per cent, followed by Madaripur — 0.58 per cent and Netrokona — 0.79 per cent.
Under Sylhet education board, the highest 70.59 per cent pass rate was in Sylhet district, 65.39 percent in Sunamganj and lowest 60.96 percent was in Moulvibazar district.
A total of 1094 examinee got GPA-5 under Sylhet board, of them Highest 772 examinees achieved GPA-5 in Sylhet, 87 in Habiganj district and lowest only 28 examinees in Sunamganj district.
Under Dinajpur board, the highest pass rate, 76.47 percent, and GPA-5 achievers, 2,266, were in Rangpur while the lowest pass rate, 57.98 per cent, and GPA-5 achievers, 29, were in Panchagarh district.
Under Cumilla board, the highest pass rate of 86.87 percent was in Chandpur, 82 percent in Cumilla, 68 percent in Laxmipur and the lowest pass rate was 63.51 percent in Feni district.
Under Barishal board, the highest pass rate is 74.17 percent in Barishal, 66.82 percent in Jhalakati district, lowest 65.09 percent was in Patuakhali district.
The highest number of 708 examinees achieved GPA-5 in Barishal, and lowest GPA-5 achievers, 69 were from Jhalakati in the board.
Dhaka Education Board chairman Prof M Ziaul Haque said, “Gap in results of students from rural and urban areas will remain as at rural areas there are shortages of facilities for students comparing to the urban students.”
He said the differences were gradually being effaced between students from the urban areas and students from districts and upazilas.
“We are trying to strengthen our monitoring over the institutions with poor results,” he added.
Educationist Prof Mohammad Kaykobad said, “Earlier, the students from rural areas did better in exams and they were not lagging behind their fellows from the urban areas. But now the rural students are leg behind.”
He said, “Now education has become very costly and only if you pay well you will be better prepared which may ensure good result.”
Prof Kaykobad, also a teacher of BUET, said students in the rural areas face resource constraint, including dearth of good teachers, which affects the quality of education.
Educationist Prof Siddiqur Rahman said difference in facilities in schools is creating the gap between rural and urban areas in terms of results.
Prof Rahman, also former teacher of institute of education and research at Dhaka University, said students in Dhaka usually can afford coaching, private tuition and get better guidance from parents and teachers in classrooms which helped them go ahead.