Early Childhood Education

Building Strong Foundations: Examining Early Childhood Education in India

Read full report

ECE in India: A Quick Glance

While both the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 and National ECCE (Early Childhood Care and Education) Policy 2013 recognize the critical importance of investing in young learners, we find that there is inadequate provision and lack of prioritization of ECE in both Anganwadis and government pre-primary sections in India. This leads to poor learning levels of children before they enter grade 1.

Anganwadis have very few (and decreasing) 5 year olds (35.3%), when compared to 4 year olds (61%) (ASER 2022)

School readiness outcomes are alarmingly low, with only 24% of 5-year-olds being able to do a simple listening comprehension task (ASER 2019)


Only one in six (17%) 5-year-olds could complete a simple pictorial pattern (IECEI Study, 2014)

Our Approach to Improve ECE in India


Research, Advocacy and Knowledge Partnerships

Conduct research on and evaluate various models of public provisioning of ECE, aimed at increasing effective learning time in Anganwadis and pre-primary sections in government schools. Build salience at national and state levels on evidence-based approaches to ensure quality ECE. Read more in our in-depth piece for ‘The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2019 : Early Years’ here. 


State Projects

Provide advisory and techno-managerial support to state governments to pilot and scale innovative solutions to universalize quality ECE. Our support aims to increase teaching time, provide more and better support to teachers and strengthen caregivers’ role in home-learning. Read more on our School Readiness Pilots conducted in Karnataka and Gujarat here. 

Voices from the ground: Featuring stories of #ClassroomHeroes