Personalisation of Education

Personalisation of Education 
The Government is in the process of framing a New Education Policy (NEP) for which it has carried out nearly a year-long consultations, which included online, grassroots and national level thematic deliberations on 33 identified themes. 

Three themes, one under School Education and two under Higher Education, are relevant to personalisation of education from the perspectives of new and innovative courses. Under School Education, the theme “New Knowledge, pedagogies and approaches for teaching of Science, Maths and Technology in School Education to improve learning outcomes of Students”, underlines the need to deliberate and find workable strategies for strengthening the quality of teaching–learning processes for better outcomes; innovations and diversity of approaches in matters of curricula, pedagogies and use of technology to improve the learning levels. Under Higher Education, the theme “Opportunities for technology enabled learning”, seeks to understand the complexities around having a robust framework for technology enabled education, the human and infrastructural facilities that can fully exploit the opportunities of TEL and understanding to what extent do our institutions leverage the potential of ICT for improving access and quality of general and technical education and also faculty development. Another theme “New Knowledge’ recognizes that today there is a dynamic knowledge based society and newer technologies and challenges are seeing the birth of new areas of study. Accordingly, our higher education institutions must identify the new domains of knowledge in the global scenario and build up their capacities to meet this need.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 
Steps to Check Discrimination and Harassment in Central Universities 
A Conference of Vice Chancellors of Central Universities was held on February 18, 2016 whereby all the Vice Chancellors and senior Officers of the Central Universities have been asked to be more vigilant & put a proper system in place to ensure that the students from these categories are not put to any disadvantage/ hardship. The Vice Chancellors have inter-alia agreed to appoint Anti-Discrimination Officer as provided in UGC (Promotion of Equity in Higher Education Institutions) Regulations, 2012.

The National Policy on Education, 1986 lays special emphasis on the removal of disparities and to equalize educational opportunity by attending to the specific needs of those who have been denied equality so far. The Central Universities are autonomous bodies which are governed by their own Acts and Statutes, Ordinances and Regulations made thereunder. The Acts of the respective Central Universities, stipulate that the university shall not discriminate on grounds of caste, religion, etc. The Central Universities are competent to take all administrative decisions including to prevent all kinds of harassment and discrimination against any section of students.

The Government of India and University Grants Commission (UGC) have also taken several initiatives to check the incidents of harassment of all students, including the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, in the higher educational institutions of the country. Major initiatives undertaken are as below:

In order to check discrimination and harassment of any sections of students and to strengthen the grievance redressal mechanism, University Grants Commission (UGC) has formulated UGC (Promotion of Equity in Higher Education Institutions) Regulations, 2012 and UGC (Grievance Redressal), Regulations, 2012. These Regulations intend to give effect in letter and spirit to the provisions of the Constitution and other statutory provisions and policies for prevention of discrimination on the grounds of caste and to safeguard the interests of the students belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. The Regulations also seek to provide for advancement of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe students through setting up of Equal Opportunity Cells in each Higher Educational Institution. The UGC also provides financial assistance to establish the Centre for Study of Social Exclusion and Inclusive Policy to support focused research on the issue of social exclusion related to dalits, tribal and religious minorities.

In order to make the universities/colleges more responsive to the needs and constraints of the disadvantaged social groups, the University Grants Commission is giving financial assistance to all eligible Colleges/Universities to establish Equal Opportunity Centres. The aim and objective of this Scheme is to oversee the effective implementation of policies and programmes for disadvantaged groups, to provide guidance and counselling with respect to academic, financial, social and other matters and to enhance the diversity within the campus.

UGC Regulations on Curbing the Menace of Ragging in Higher Educational Institutions, 2009 provide for elimination of ragging in all its forms from universities. The UGC has a Nationwide 24X7 anti ragging helpline for receiving and tracking complaints of ragging and for various consequential actions in respect of fresh complaints.

UGC has also approved establishment of 126 SC/STs cells in various Universities with a view to safeguarding the interest of SC/ST students.

Other initiatives also include provisions of Anti Discriminatory faculty advisors for SC/ST students who look into their problems and advise accordingly, appointment of Student Counsellors to address personal, academic, psychological and family related problems, providing sports and extra curriculum activities, setting up counseling centers, provision of anxiety helpline, and setting up disciplinary action committee to take urgent action in case of any complaints reported ragging, discrimination based on caste, creed, religion and gender etc.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 
Modernization of Madarsas’ Education 
The Scheme for Providing Quality Education to Madarsas (SPQEM) is being implemented all over the country through the State/UT Governments. SPQEM provides financial assistance to encourage traditional institutions like Madarsas and Maktabs to introduce modern education through subjects as Science, Mathematics, Social Studies, Hindi and English in their curriculum through support for a maximum of three teachers, books, Teaching Learning Materials and Computer Labs. The scheme aims at providing the students education comparable with national standards, for which affiliation with the National Institute of Open schooling (NIOS) is integral to the scheme.

The amount released for the purpose during the last 3 years and current year is as follows:
(as on 22-02-2016)
Rs. (in crore)

A National Workshop was held on 09.10.2015 to create awareness amongst all the stakeholders. Thereafter, a preliminary meeting with the State Governments was held in order to sensitize the States on the issue of sending viable proposals as per the norms of the scheme and to ensure that maximum benefits can be provided to the madarsas. Two Central Grant In Aid Committee (CGIAC) meetings for SPQEM have been held so far on 15.09.2015 and 14.01.2016.

A significant decision has been taken in the second meeting of the CGIAC for SPQEM held on 14th January, 2016 that for more effective and better implementation of the scheme, from the next financial year, the states should submit proposals in the beginning of the year itself in a single lot along with the list of Madarsas with U-DISE or unique code so that there is enough time available to implement and monitor the scheme more efficiently. The States have also been asked to specify the deadline to the Madarsas in their state for submission of UCs on time so as to facilitate timely release of funds. It has also been emphasized that all the proposals should come through the concerned State Government.

However, since the process of modernization of traditional Madarsas and Maktab is voluntary, it is upto the individual Madarsas/ Maktab having been in existence for at least three years and registered under the Central or State Government Acts or Madarsas Board or with the Waqf Boards or the National Institute of Open schooling (NIOS), to send its proposal to the State Governments to avail the benefits of the Scheme.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question.


Counsellor and Wellness Teacher in Schools 
The Framework for Implementation of Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) recognizes the role of guidance and counselling services in promoting student retention and better scholastic performance in curricular areas, facilitating adjustment and career development of students, developing right attitude towards studies, self, work and others. The Framework provides that every school should have at least one teacher and preferably two teachers (one male and one female) trained in guidance and counselling. The in-service training of teachers, which has a module on counselling has been imparted under RMSA to 3,87,777 teachers during 2014-15 and 2015-16.

There are 591 Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs). Instructions have been issued to all JNVs to engage Counselors on need basis. Further, House Masters are trained to counsel the students. Every year, teachers are deputed for diploma course in guidance and counseling conducted by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT)/ Regional Institutes of Education (RIEs). Till 2015-16, 210 teachers of JNVs have been deputed for the diploma course.

While it is not mandatory to have a counselor/health wellness teacher in every school of the country, the affiliation Bye-Laws of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) provide that every secondary and senior secondary school should appoint a person on full time basis for performing the duties of a Counselor/Health Wellness Teacher. Schools having enrolment of less than 300 students in class IX to XII can appoint a Health Wellness Teacher on part time basis.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 

Responses Received on No-Detention Policy 
In pursuance of a resolution adopted in the 59th meeting of the Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) held on 6th June, 2012, a Sub-Committee was constituted for assessment of implementation of Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) in the context of No-Detention provision in the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009. The Sub Committee during the course of its work held 5 (five) regional meetings and consulted various stakeholders over the issue of No Detention. The Sub-Committee submitted its report in August, 2014. The recommendations of Sub-Committee include, inter-alia, measuring Learning Level Outcomes of all children on regular basis, to catalyse a performance-driven culture and review of ‘No-Detention’ policy and its implementation in a phased manner.

The report of the Sub-Committee was placed before CABE in its meeting held on 19.8.2015, wherein it was decided to request all States/UTs to share their views on the No-Detention policy, in writing with Ministry of Human Resource Development. 22 States shared their views on the No Detention policy out of which 18 States have suggested to modify the No Detention policy.

Additionally, during the consultations held with State Governments for formulation of New Education Policy (NEP), the issues related to No-Detention policy were also covered. Presently, all such suggestions have been forwarded to the Committee for evolution of New Education Policy.

Another Sub-Committee under the Chairpersonship of Minister of Education, Government of Rajasthan has been constituted on 26.10.2015 inter-alia, to review the feedback received from States/UTs on the No-Detention policy.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 
Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy 
The Government of India has constituted a ‘Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy’. The Committee consists of Shri T.S.R. Subramanian, Former Cabinet Secretary as the Chairman and Smt. Shailaja Chandra, former Chief Secretary, NCT of Delhi, Shri Sevaram Sharma, former Home Secretary, NCT of Delhi, Shri Sudhir Mankad, former Chief Secretary, Gujarat & Prof. J.S. Rajput, former Director, NCERT as members. The Committee has to examine the outcome documents, recommendations and suggestions received and formulate a draft National Education Policy as well as a Framework for Action (FFA) by the end of this month.

An unprecedented collaborative, multi-stakeholder and multi-pronged consultation process for formulating the New Education Policy (NEP) has been undertaken by the Government of India. The three-pronged consultation process included online, grassroots and national level thematic deliberations.

The online consultation process was undertaken on portal from 26th January, 2015 to 31st October, 2015 and 29,109 suggestions have been received on the 33 identified themes.

An extensive, time-bound, participative, bottom-up consultative process across Gram Panchayats, Blocks, Urban Local Bodies, districts and all States/Union Territories was carried out between May to October, 2015. As on 22.02.2016, 1,10,534 villages, 3250 Blocks, 725 ULBs, 339 districts and 18 States in respect of School Education and, in respect of Higher Education, 2724 Blocks, 940 ULBs, 406 districts and 18 States have uploaded their suggestions on

A number of in-person consultations have been held by the Government with stakeholder Ministries in the Government of India (GoI) and also with the State Governments on NEP. A High Level meeting was taken by Minister for Human Resource Development on 14.02.2015 to discuss the consultative process for formulation of New Education Policy and invite suggestions of other Ministries and Departments. In all, 15 Government of India Ministries have sent their suggestions to Ministry of HRD.

Ministry of HRD held thematic consultations through Apex level institutions and regulators, such as, UGC, AICTE, NCTE, AIU, NCERT, CBSE, IIAS, NLMA, NAAC, NUEPA, IGNOU and Central Universities by inviting all relevant stakeholders including experts, academics, industry representatives, civil society etc. during July-October, 2015. It may be mentioned that NCERT, CBSE, NCTE & IGNOU held Pan –India consultations. Further, the Ministry held thematic consultations at the national level, in which experts having domain expertise as well stakeholders were invited for deliberations.

Six online talks with leading subject experts, field practitioner engagement through the UN Solutions Exchange platform (70 nos.), online survey by CBSE with over 15000 responses, youth survey and focus group discussions covering 6017 youth by the Mahatma Gandhi Institute for Education for Peace and Sustainable Development, UNESCO Category-I Institute in Asia Pacific were conducted as part of the public engagement. In addition, several organizations and individuals have sent in their views, suggestions, inputs through post and emails.

Minister for Human Resource Development wrote to all Hon’ble Members of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha in July 2015 inviting their suggestions and considered views on the New Education Policy.

A meeting was held by the Minister of Human Resource Development on 21st March, 2015 with Education Ministers, Education Secretaries and other senior officials of the State Governments in which the consultation process, including the process of uploading the recommendations on portal, was explained in detail and suggestions of States on the process as well as the themes were also invited. States were also requested to include additional themes, if felt necessary.

The consultation process was one of the agenda points in the meeting of Central Advisory Board on Education (CABE) held on 19th August 2015. Views of all States and members of CABE were invited on the consultation process and the themes.

Six Zonal Meetings were held by the Minister of Human Resource Development in Eastern, Central, North-Eastern, Western, Southern and Northern Zones covering all States and UTs during September-October 2015 which was attended by Education Ministers and officials of the respective States/UTs. The HRD Minister also held zone-wise interactions with district level officials and public representatives across the country via video conference.

(a) Suggestions on NEP have also been received from nearly 30 Minority Institutions.

(b) All suggestions, including those received from Minority Institutions, have been forwarded to the Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 
Measures to Improve Education Facilities for Women 
The expansion of education among girls/women has been an integral part of educational policies and programmes. The National Policy on Education 1986 (as modified in 1992) lays emphasis on education of girls/women through empowerment programmes. Accordingly, Ministry of Human Resource Development has taken a number of initiatives for expansion of girls’ education, details of which are as under:

1) In the newly announced Scheme “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao”, Rs.5.00 crore has been made available for strengthening girls’ education in 100 specified districts on the basis of Child Sex Ratio which works out to Rs.5.00 lakh per district, for instituting district level awards to be given to 5 schools in each district every year on the following parameters:

(i) Rs.1.00 lakh award may be given to the School Management Committee (SMC) which enrols 100% girls in the neighbourhood of the primary school and also retains them in the first year.

(ii) Rs.1.00 lakh can be given as an award to the SMC of primary school which causes the transition of 100% girls studying in class V into class VI of same/other neighbourhood upper primary schools

(iii) Two awards each of Rs.1.00 lakh may be given to SMCs of upper primary schools which effect a 100% transition of girls studying in class VIII to class IX in same/other neighbourhood secondary schools.

(iv) Rs.1.00 lakh award can be given to the SMC of the school which affect 100% transition of girls studying in class X to class I in same/neighbourhood higher secondary schools.

2) Ministry of Human Resource Development has prepared a ‘Digital Gender Atlas for Advancing Girls’ Education in India which was launched on the occasion of International Women’s Day in 2015.

3) National Scheme of Incentive to Girls for Secondary Education (NSIGSE) provides Rs.3000.00 which is deposited in the name of eligible unmarried girls below 16 years as fixed deposit, who are entitled to withdraw it along with interest thereon on reaching 18 years of age and after passing class X. The objective of the scheme is to establish an enabling environment to reduce the drop outs and to promote the enrolment of girls children in secondary schools. The scheme covers (i) all girls belonging to SC/ST communities, who pass class 8 and (ii) all girls who pass class 8 from KGBVs and enrol in class IX in Government, Government-aided and Local Body Schools. The funds under the scheme are not allocated State-wise. Funds are sanctioned to States/UTs based on the proposals received from the State Government and availability of funds under the scheme during the financial year.

4) (a) In order to ensure greater participation of girls in elementary education, ‘Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA)’ has targeted interventions for girls which include opening of schools in the neighbourhood to make access easier for girls, appointment of additional teachers including women teachers, free textbooks, free uniforms, separate toilets for girls, teachers’ sensitisation programmes to promote girls participation, gender-sensitive teaching materials including textbooks. In addition, Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (KGBV) has been opened in Educationally Backward Blocks (EBBs) where the female rural literacy is below the national average to provide for residential upper primary schools for girls.

(b) ‘Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA)’ envisages enhancing the quality of education by providing a secondary school within a reasonable distance of every habitation, improving quality of education imparted at secondary level, removal of gender, socio-economic and disability barriers.

Under the integrated scheme of RMSA, interventions including construction of new secondary schools, provision of toilets blocks in existing schools with separate toilets for girls, construction of teachers quarters, construction of Girls Hostels in EBBs, special teaching for learning enhancement, self defence training, guidance and counselling facilities, conduct of adolescent education programmes, organization of empowerment/awareness camps are taken up to improve the education of girls at the secondary stage.

5) In Higher Education sector, University Grants Commission (UGC) has allocated special grants for construction of Women hostels in the Universities. UGC has provided financial assistance for construction of 535 (39 in universities + 496 in colleges) Women hostels in the last five years, UGC has undertaken a number of measures for the improvement of education of Women. Some of the important major are given below.

(i) Single Girl Child Scheme; Statement of funds released during XIIth Plan under the scheme is enclosed at Annexure-V.

(ii) Post-Doctoral Fellowship for Women Statement of funds released during XIIth Plan under the scheme is enclosed at Annexure-VI.

(iii) UGC funding to Women’s University; UGC funds 7 Universities in India which are set up exclusively for women. Statement of funds released during XIIth Plan under the scheme is enclosed at Annexure-VII.

6) CBSE has launched a scheme “Udaan” to provide free online resources to girl students of Class XI and Class XII for preparation of admission test for the premier engineering colleges in the country. The special focus of scheme is to address the low enrolment ratio of girl students in these prestigious institutions and to enable girl students to receive special incentives and support so that they can join these institutions and go on to take leadership roles in the future. The objective of this project is to enable girl students to soar to higher education from schools, and to eventually take various leadership roles in future. The aim is also to enrich and enhance teaching and learning of Science and Mathematics at Senior Secondary level by providing free and online resources to everyone, with a focus on special incentives and support to 1000 selected disadvantaged girls per year.

7) All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has launched a scheme to provide assistance for Advancement of Girls participation in Technical Education. This is an attempt to give every young woman the opportunity to further her education and prepare for a successful future by empowering women through technical education. The scheme envisages to grant 4000 scholarships per annum. This includes tuition fee of Rs. 30000/- or at actual, whichever is less and Rs. 2000/- per month for 10 months as incidentals each year.

This information was given by the Union Human Resource Development Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question. 

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