A uniform structure of school education, the 10+2 system has been adopted by all the States and Union Territories of India. However, within the States and the UTs, there remains variations in the number of classes constituting the Primary, Upper Primary, High and Higher Secondary school stages, age for admission to class I, medium of instruction, public examinations, teaching of Hindi and English, number of working days in a year, academic session, vacation periods, fee structure, compulsory education etc. The education system, in Gujarat, with respect to schooling is divided into four distinct stages viz. Primary (Class I to IV), Upper Primary (Class V to VII), Secondary (Class VIII to X) and Higher Secondary (Class XI and XII). Higher and technical education is provided through universities and colleges in the general higher education category (arts, science and commerce) and technical education category (engineering, pharmacy, agricultural sciences etc.).
Any development oriented programme derives much of its strength from inherent legislative directives framed in the form of a policy. The education sector in Gujarat perhaps has not been shining to its potential due to the lack of a concerted policy direction. Much of the current system of education derives itself from the National Policy on Education, 1976. Though the constitution clearly mandates education as both a centre and state subject, there have been limited efforts in the state of Gujarat on framing a focused education policy to enable holistic development of education.
Gujarat ranks 9th on the Education Development Index (EDI); Planning and prepared by the National University of Educational Administration (NUEPA) , this index measures the performance of states on the Universalization of Elementary Education programme.
Though it is a significant leap from its 14th position not very long ago, it still points to a compelling need for making intensive efforts to bring about a change in the status of education in the state.