History of education in Tamilnadu Tnpsc

History of education in Tamilnadu

Tamil Nadu is an educationally progressive state in the Country. In terms of literacy, it is one of the top states in India, which is only next to Kerala and Maharashtra. The and males are more than the national average.

  • As per the census of 2011, the literacy rate for Tamil Nadu was 73.47 and the national average is 65.38 per cent.
  • Tamil Nadu is an educationally progressive state in India. In literacy, it is one of the three top states and it is next only to Kerala and Maharashtra.
  • The progress of education in Tamil Nadu in terms of literacy. The literacy rates for both males and females are more than the national average.

2001 Census

  • According to the 2001 census, the overall literacy rate for Tamil Nadu was 73.47 as against the national average of 65.38 per cent.
  • Between 1991 and 2001, the percentage of enrolment at the secondary level increased from 13 per cent to 59 per cent.
  • There was a steady increase in educational expenditure in Tamil Nadu from 1962-63 to 2000 – 2001. During the period, the expenditure on education increased from Rs.26 crores to Rs.4949 crores. This is a remarkable increase.

The National Policy on Education (NPE) 1986 of the Government of India gave:

  • First priority to Universal Primary Education (UPE).
  • The UPE goal aimed at achieving Education for All (EPA) covering only classes I and V.

The main factors which influenced the steady increase in enrolment of children in the age group 6-11 years in Tamil Nadu are :

(1) easy accessibility of schools ;

(2) awareness among parents about the value of education ;

3) rising real per capita income ;

(4) implementation of the Chief Minister’s Nutritious Noon Meal Scheme

5) a number of inducements and concessions offered by the Government in the form of free supply of books, free bus passes and so on.

The education system in Tamilnadu

Access to schools, in terms of distance, is a major factor that has made Tamil Nadu one of the three top states in literacy level.

There is a primary school within a distance of one kilometre from habitations (99 per cent of habitations), an upper primary school within a distance of 3 km (81 per cent of habitations), a secondary school within a distance of 5 km (78 per cent of habitations) and higher secondary school within a distance of 8 km (76 per cent of habitations).

This is a remarkable achievement when compared with the all – India situation.

The decline in Dropout Rate

In recent years, there has been a decline in the dropout rate. This has been made possible by many factors such as:

  • Chief Minister’s Nutritious Noon Meal scheme,
  • Free health checkups
  • Free education and
  • Other concessions like a free bus passes, slates, books and uniforms.

District Primary Education Programme (DPEP)

  • The DPEP has been introduced with the objective of achieving the goal of universal primary education. It focuses on reducing gender disparities in education.

Non-Formal Education and Adult Literacy: The measures taken by the Government of Tamil Nadu under the adult education programme include :

  • Total Literacy Campaign (TLC),
  • Post – Literacy campaign and
  • Continuing Education

All these measures come under Arivoli Iyakkam (Light of Knowledge movement).

Arivoli Iyakkam

In this movement, an adult is defined as one in the age group 15-35.

Non – Formal Education (NFE) and Adult Literacy

In view of the high dropouts in the 6-14 age group, the government has introduced non-formal education for the benefit of working children, girls and those children who cannot attend full-time schools owing to many socio-economic conditions.

Since 1979, the Government of India has been running the NFE scheme with the help of state governments and voluntary agencies.

Secondary and Higher Secondary Education

There has been a quantitative expansion of schools, students and teachers at this level. Permanent buildings, additional teachers, more science equipment, better laboratories and workshops and a strengthening of the vocational stream are some of the immediate needs of second-level education.

Tamil Nadu is a leading state in the implementation of vocational courses. And the government has more or less succeeded in increasing the enrolment of students in the 16-18 age group by offering higher secondary education in schools instead of a pre-university course in the colleges.

Arts and science colleges: The number of arts and science colleges increased from 57 in 1960 – 61 to 444 in 2004-05.

Technical Education

So far as technical education is concerned, self–financing colleges dominate the scene. More than 87 per cent of the students study in self-financing colleges. Though this goes against the equity principle, self-financing colleges grow in number.

Only the non–poor manage to find places in these colleges. These colleges do not promote the goal of equal opportunities for all. Of late, self-financing colleges are trying to make inroads into professional education (eg. Medical colleges) also.

According to Weiner, “the State has a very positive, very important role to play in the promotion of mass education, which cannot and should not be left to the private sector alone”.

Early childhood care and education programme in India: It is an integrated approach to reduce malnutrition, and other related diseases among disadvantaged children, expectant and nursing mothers.

ICDS schemes

The ICDS schemes focus on provision of services to improve nutrition and health requirement of children from the date of conception till the age of six years.


These services are rendered through child welfare centres known as Anganwadi. They include supplementary nutrition, non-formal preschool education, health check-up, immunization and health education.

Special Health Programme

The Government proposed to implement 1999 a special school health programme called Vazhvoli Thittam (which literally means light of life Scheme, referring to good health).

Vazhvoli Thittam

Under the scheme, a field officer from the health department will visit schools once a week and examine the children. If necessary he will take them to a Primary Health Centre for treatment.

To make this scheme effective, teachers are also trained in the symptoms of the disease so that they can report them to the medical officers visiting the school. They can also teach subjects on health education.

1826Board of Public Instructions established
1841First High School opened in Madras
1849High Schools for Girls Opened
1854Directorate of Public Instruction established
1892Madras Educational Rules enforced
1910Board of Secondary Education established
1911SSLC Public Examination conducted for the first time
1921Madras Elementary Educational Rules enforced
1924Compulsory and Free Education introduced in some selected places
1953Directorate of Legal Studies established
1955Pension Scheme for Teachers introduced
1956Midday-meal programmes implemented
1957Directorate of Technical Education established
1960Scheme for Free supply of Uniforms for School Children organized
1964Introduction of Free Education up to high school level
1965Directorate of Collegiate Education established
1969Tamil Nadu Text-book Society established
1972Directorate of Public Libraries established
1973Directorate of Government Examinations and SCERT established
1976Directorate of Non-formal and Adult Education established
1978Higher Secondary Education (10+2) introduced
1981Teachers in Panchayat Union Schools become Government Employees
1982Nutrition Meal Scheme introduced
1985Free Supply of Text Books and Uniforms up to VIII Standard extended.
1986Directorate of Elementary Education established.  Implementation of National Policy on Education, Teachers in Municipal/Township/Corporation become Government Employees.
1988-1990Introduction of revised syllabus based on National Policy for I -XII standards
1990Directorate of Teacher Education Research and Training established.
1995-96Introduction of the revised syllabus for classes I-XIII
2001Directorate of Matriculation School formed.
4 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
* * All the Notes in this blog, are referred from Tamil Nadu State Board Books and Samacheer Kalvi Books. Kindly check with the original Tamil Nadu state board books and Ncert Books.
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x