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30% KIDS FACE PROBLEM IN MULTIPLICATION

Sixty-six per cent of Class III students in the country are able to answer mathematics questions correctly but 30 per cent still have problems handling simple multiplication, a survey released today said. It also found that 64 per cent of the children were able to answer language questions correctly. Seventy per cent of the kids were able to handle simple multiplication and 84 per cent of the students data relevant to their context. Further it said 65 per cent of the children were able to listen and respond correctly and about 86 per cent of them were able to recognise a given picture. Releasing the 'national achievement survey' report, HRD Minister M M Pallam Raju said the results show that the level of learning outcome is not as "dismal" as is being projected by other surveys. The survey was conducted on over 1 lakh students across the country, involving over 7,000 schools and 14,000 teachers. The results of the NCERT-conducted study are in sharp contrast to the one released by Pratham, a private entity last month. Though the Pratham report was confined to rural schools, it said that only about 40 per cent children able to read a Class-I level paragraph and just about 25 per cent in Class V able to solve a simple division. Officials attributed the improvement in performance of students both in language and mathematics to the intervention provided by Sarva Siksha Abhiyan scheme. The NCERT assessed students' abilities in two subjects -- language and mathematics. In language, they were judged on listening, recognition of words and reading comprehension. Similarly, in mathematics, they were judged on numbers, basic operations like addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, money, measurement and data handling through a child-friendly test administered in 16 languages. In this subject, about 40 per cent of the students answered more than 75 per cent questions correctly while only 10 per cent students scored below 35 per cent. In language, 30 per cent of the students answered more than 75 per cent questions correctly while only 10 per cent students scored less than 35 per cent. The study also said that in mathematics, 14 states or Union Territories scored significantly above the national average. High performance was in Daman and Diu, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Karnataka and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. On the other hand, 12 states scored below the national average, of which the low performers were Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Haryana and Jammu and Kashmir.

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