On Wednesday, the Union Cabinet approved India’s new National Education Policy 2020 (NEP 2020), which is anticipated to bring major reforms in higher education. This will increasingly focus on non-academic skills appreciating language diversity and course fluidity.
On the occasion a proposal to rename the Ministry of Human Resource Development as the Ministry of Education was also approved.
Through the new policy the Government of India aims for 100% youth and adult literacy in India.
Below is all you need to know about India’s National Education Policy 2020.
The NEP 2020 has been granted with provisions to confirm universal access to school education at all levels – pre-school to secondary.
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They have been granted infrastructure support and innovative education centres to bring back dropouts into the mainstream. They could track the students and their learning levels, in an attempt to boost their performance.
The NEP 2020 facilitates learning of classes 3, 5 and 8 through NIOS and State Open Schools. In addition to this, secondary education programs comparable to Grades 10 and 12, vocational courses, adult literacy and life-enrichment programs are also circulated.
NEP 2020 hopes of bringing back about 2 crore out of school children into the mainstream.
Early Childhood Care & Education
NEP replaces the prominent 10+2 structure of school curricula with a 5+3+3+4 curricular structure corresponding to ages 3-8, 8-11, 11-14, and 14-18.
NCERT will formulate framework for an early childhood education of children up to the age of 8.
Attaining Foundational Literacy and Numeracy
MHRD will set up a National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy. All states are obliged to prepare an implementation plan. A National Book Promotion Policy will also be developed.
Reforms in School Curricula and Pedagogy
The school curricula and pedagogy will aim for holistic education of learners. The key 21st century skills will be emphasized and essential learning, critical thinking and experiential learning will be enhanced.
Students can make flexible choices of subjects they want to learn, as all rigid separations between arts and sciences, curricular and extra-curricular, and even vocational and academic streams will not be considered.
Schools can start vocational education from the 6th grade, these could include internships.
Multilingualism and the Power of Language
The NEP 2020 supports mother tongue/local language/regional language as the medium atleast till Grade 5.
Sanskrit to be offered as an option for students, at all levels. No language will be enforced on any student. They are allowed to choose from foreign languages right from the secondary level.
With NEP 2020, school examinations will be conducted in Grades 3, 5, and 8. And board exams for Grades 10 and 12 will be kept going, while being redesigned with holistic development as the aim.
A different National Assessment Centre, PARAKH (Performance Assessment, Review, and Analysis of Knowledge for Holistic Development), will be established to serve as a standard-setting body.
Equitable and Inclusive Education
NEP 2020 provides for the children with disabilities to participate in the regular schooling. They demand educators, resource centres, accommodations to be supportive.
Increase GER to 50% by 2035
NEP 2020 strives to heighten the Gross Enrollment Ratio in higher education from 26.3% (2018) to 50% by 2035. They plan on adding more than 3.5 crore new seats to higher education institutions.
Holistic Multidisciplinary Education
The policy intends to provide education with flexible curricula and creative combinations of subjects, with appropriate certification.
Academic Bank of Credit
An Academic Bank of Credit is going to be established for digitally stocking all academic merits earned from different institutes, mainly to let these be transferred and tallied with the final degree earned.
Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities
Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities (MERUs), at par with IITs, IIMs, to be set up.
National Research Foundation
The National Research Foundation will be an apex body for nurturing a prevalent research culture across higher education.
Higher Education Commission of India (HECI) will monitor the entire higher education, except medical and legal education.
Rationalized Institutional Architecture
The institutions to be established now can range from Research-intensive universities to teaching-intensive universities and autonomous degree-granting colleges. Affiliation of colleges is to be phased out in 15 years and a stage-wise mechanism is to be established for granting graded autonomy to colleges.
Financial support for students
Students belonging to SC, ST, OBC, and other SEDGs will be supported by The National Scholarship Portal.
Open and Distance Learning
This could play a significant role in increasing GER. Hence the online courses and other digital repositories, shall be evaluated to match the highest quality. Measures such as online courses and digital repositories, funding for research, improved student services, credit-based recognition of MOOCs, etc, will be taken to ensure it is at par with the highest quality in-class programmes.
Online and Digital Education
A dedicated unit for the building of digital infrastructure, digital content and capacity building will be created in the MHRD to look after the educational needs of both school and higher education.
Technology in Education
The National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), will be established to deliver a platform for the free exchange of ideas concerned with the use of technology to enhance learning.
Promotion of Indian Languages
The Indian Institute of Translation and Interpretation (IITI) will facilitate the use of Indian languages. The National Institute (or Institutes) for Pali, Persian and Prakrit, HEIs for strengthening of Sanskrit will be established.
All stand-alone technical universities, health science universities, legal and agricultural universities etc now will be transformed into multi-disciplinary institutions.
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