Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 5 declared that as many as 14,500 schools will be “upgraded" around India as part of a new, centrally sponsored programme the Pradhan Mantri Schools For Rising India (PM SHRI).
What is PM SHRI?
As part of it, up to 14,500 schools in states and union territories would undergo renovations to reflect the major components of the NEP, 2020. The first announcement regarding this scheme was made in June during a NEP conference organized by the Ministry of Education in Gujarat’s Gandhinagar after the plan was discussed with state education ministers.
Dharmendra Pradhan, the Union Minister of Education, had previously stated that the plan would be advanced after consultation with the states. He added that while there are exemplary schools like Navodaya Vidyalayas, Kendriya Vidyalayas, the PM SHRI will act as “NEP labs”.
What are the key features of NEP in school education?
As announced by the officials, the National Education Plan (NEP) envisions a curriculum structure and teaching method organised into foundational, preparatory, intermediate, and secondary levels. Play-based learning will be used in the foundational years (preschool and grades I and II). At the preparatory level (III-V), light textbooks are to be introduced along with some formal classroom teaching. Further, at the medium level, subject teachers will also be introduced (VI-VIII). Arts and sciences as well as other fields will not be clearly separated throughout the secondary stage (IX–XII).
Talking about the new scheme, PM Modi said, the organisations created by PM SHRI would turn into “model schools" and “encapsulate the complete essence of NEP."
“The National Education Policy has recently changed the educational landscape. I am confident that the PM-SHRI schools will continue to be advantageous to thousands of children all over India.
The PM claims that the schools will use a cutting-edge, transformative, and all-encompassing approach to educating students. A learning-centered, discovery-oriented approach to teaching will be prioritized. Modern infrastructure will also be emphasized, including cutting-edge technology, intelligent classrooms, sports, and more.
Schools that will be upgraded under the scheme will receive upgrades that include labs, modern classrooms, libraries, sporting goods, and art studios. They will be built as green schools, with energy-efficient infrastructure, recycling of garbage, water conservation, and curricular integration of an organic lifestyle.
Where will these schools come up?
The list of schools that have been picked for this purpose has not yet been made public by the Center. However, it has also stated that the PM SHRI schools will “provide mentorship" to other schools nearby.
Since this school is sponsored by the Centre, it will bear 60 per cent of the cost of implementation. The remaining 40 per cent will be borne by the state or UT. In Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir and the northeast, the contribution of the Centre can go up to 90 per cent.