On November 18, 2020, the proposal of a new education policy bill was hereby swiftly passed, by the Union Cabinet setting into motion a generous amount of anticipation and dissent. It proposed extensive changes in the education vitae.
The NEP has been forwarded as a measure to develop the education system in India. It can be deduced as a framework to improve the quality and output of education in the country, which is seriously lagging in comparison to its peers as China, Korea, Japan etc.
1) The new education policy has proposed considerable changes to the persisting education system. in the following we have highlighted the key points suggested by the NEP to wrought changes in the education system of the nation as a whole.
2) Introduction of new pedagogical structure: It seeks to draw a curtain over 10 +2 schooling model, by replacing it with the 5+3+3+4 pedagogical design, which corresponds to age groups as follows 3-8 years (pre-preparatory), 8-11 years ( primary) 11- 14 ( middle) and 14 -18 ( secondary stage).
3) Usage of the mother tongue: It also emphasis on the usage of mother tongues for relaying instruction in schools till the fifth standard. The changes are to be restricted to government school only and only to the extent possible’. In addition to it, the mid-day meal scheme is to extend to the whole of the pre-preparatory group. The new education policy focus shall be on accumulating practical knowledge and life skills.
4) Change in orientation and vision of curriculum: The curriculum of each standard shall be prepared in a clairvoyant manner to enable the students to acquire the core essentials. It desires to cultivate among student an aptitude for reasoning, scientific temper and critical thinking and analysis. The informal internship is to be introduced for children belonging to class 6 – 8 with local vocational experts as carpenters, gardeners, potters etc.
5) Coding to be included as part of the curriculum: Children from class six onwards could now learn the knacks of coding. It is included in syllabi of academic institution of the most first-world nation as Australia, Singapore, Denmark etc.
6) Phasing into single-stream: The policy aims to phase out all the institutions offering single streams by converting them into multidisciplinary ones by the year 2040. The system of compartmentalization of students into three streams post 10th standard shall be nullified.
7) Four-year Bachelors programme: The Bachelor’s programme shall be of four years tenure with an exit option. Under it, students have the option of exiting after a year with a certificate, with a diploma on studying for two years and a bachelors degree on investment of three years. Those who complete four years shall have access to research opportunities.
8) Common entrance examination: To gain admission into colleges and universities students have to qualify a national level eligibility test, similar to SAT examination in the USA.
9) Dissolution of MPhil degree: The M.Phil degree shall be dissolved and students shall have the chance to directly apply for a post-doctorate degree as much of what is taught in the former, is repeated during the study in the later.
To a great extent, the National Education Policy can be considered as an imperative move on part of the government to rejuvenate the stagnating education system and accelerate the economy by preparing the workforce to counter the demands of techno drive info based economy. In the article, we have attempted to highlight the benefits that we may reap with its implementation
1) NEP by 2025 vows to exposure at least half the student population to vocational education. Since the dawn of the 21st century, educators around the world have raised their voices in affirmation to the integration of knowledge with a life skill. NEP implementation shall see the amalgamation of traditional and vocational education; this in turn shall enable the children to gain practical expertise along with theoretical insight.
2) Setting up of national research programme: A national research programme is to be set up to encourage as well as improvise research quality. Multidisciplinary Education and Research institution shall be founded by the government to encourage inquiry and research studies.
3) The government also aspires to open up higher education to foreign players. It wants to wants to invite the top 100 universities to set up campuses in the country to ease the process of acquiring world-class education from the best universities in the world. This in hindsight shall also trickle down the brain drain.
4) It also desires to rejuvenate and transform the examination system which has heavily relied upon cramming to something that shall actually benefit the student as well as the nation in future. The examination system in India School examination shall be conducted for third, fifth and eight standards to testify students grasp over primitive education that seeks to relay foundation that is basic knowledge. The board examination of class 10th and 12th shall however continue.
5) Women in our country have always received the shorter end of the stick when it comes to accessing opportunities to uplift and empower oneself. The same is in the case of education. Families that have a lower income or more children, prefer to provide schooling to boy child over the girl. NEP plan to set up a Gender Inclusion Fund shall help in neutralizing the disparity ratio between a boy and girl education.
6) A National Professional Standards for Teacher’ board shall be developed by 2022, after taking into consideration academician and other special concerns advise. The idea behind it is to upgrade the quality of the education system by apprehending standards of teaching.
7) A National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy shall also be put to action to ensure that minimal knowledge of literacy and numeracy is acquired by all. The ambition is to achieve a 100 per cent literacy rate in the country by 2025.
8) In the programme hence proposed, students need are taken into serious consideration. The process of obtaining a degree has become many flexible thanks to the introduction of the 4-year bachelor programme with multiple exit option and another lax proposal. An academic Bank of Credit enables students to harness multiple credits while studying for a single degree.
Despite being a promising policy, the NEP has certain loopholes that need to be addressed. The very first thing that has been perturbing concerned citizens regarding NEP is the problem of the medium. Unlike Germany, we have 22 officially recognized language, to prepare study materials in each language is quite a gargantuan task. Three language policy shall also have political implication as not all states wish to accept Hindi as a mandatory subject. Dissent regarding it has already been voiced by the chief minister of Tamil Nadu Eppadi K Palaniswami.
Secondly, it is presumed that NEP is still a farfetched idea. Much of its proposals can’t be implemented in India due to lack of infrastructure and skilled human resource. Competent teachers are difficult to scourge but one to tarry with Criteria drawn by NEP 2020 would be more difficult.
Lastly, as per NEP, in the government school, English shall be introduced only after the seventh standard. On the contrary, the private school shall continue to instruct its students in English from a much earlier phase. This in turn shall pose problems for those students who are acquainted with the language to keep in pace with those who are introduced to it at an early stage.
Education is one of the most important components for ensuring a country’s development as they exert considerable influence in determining society’s progress pace. Literacy is one of the index criteria that are taken into consideration while measuring a country’s HDI. Much of the first world countries success can be belied upon their befitting education policies. The NEP 2020 has been formulated to upgrade the education system in our country and achieve quality industry-ready education’ as pointed by B.VR MOHAN Reddy. The efficiency of any policy can only be concluded once it has been executed. If prudently implemented, it can become the harbinger of a new dawn in the country.