The objective of New Education Policy 2020 (NEP) announced by the Ministry of Human Resource Development is to bring in changes in the current, dying 34-year-old policy in schools and higher education systems in the country. The new policy is more practical in approach and is based on the ground reality of the country’s education scenario that puts more emphasis on the creativity and innovation as well as personality development of the students rather than expecting them to score high and mock up the content without getting a basic grasp of concepts.
The curriculum is an outcome of good preparation and rigorous research and, upon implementation, will minimise the stress on young students and help reduce the annual school dropout rates drastically. It will also produce skilled personnel who would be self-sustained as per ‘Aatma Nirbhar Bharat’ and will eventually lead to quality improvement in services. With this reformation, the education system will play a big role in some of the elite sectors such as police, administration and political system where quality of education matters a lot. Let us look at some of the important features of the NEP 2020 in simple terms:
1. The idea of 10+2 board examination structure has been dropped and it will reduce the dropout rates of students from the schools.
2. The new structures that will be implemented in place of point 1 will be 5+3+3+4, which is comes as a big relief and would prove revolutionary.
3. The levels of studies have been put in simple and focused categories:
a) Pre-school: Upto Class 5
b) Middle School: Class 6 to 8 (as before)
c) High school: Class 9 to 12
d) Degree: Class 12 pnwards
4. The vocational training will start from Class 6 and will give more exposure to the students from an early age.
5. The students can choose their respective favourite subjects from Class 8 to 12 and it will provide them with a platform to do specialisation in subjects they have choosen.
6. The duration of all graduation courses would be four years, thus giving ample time students to master their respective subjects.
7. All graduate courses will have one major course which will be their core subject and one minor subject which will be additional in order to enhance the students’ interest in the subjects by giving flexibility. For example, for science students, a student with mathematics as major subject can opt for music as the minor subject.
8. All higher education systems would be governed by a single authority and UGC and AICTE will merge as one body.
9. All universities — government, private, deemed/deemed to be, open universities and vocational training institutes — will have the same grading pattern and regulations.
10. One teacher training board will be set up for all teachers in the country, irrespective of the subjects.
11. The accreditation of the institutes will be based on similar criteria and they will be able to avail autonomous rights and central funds based on their ratings.
12. A new program of basic learning will be launched for parents of children aged up to three years in their respective homes, and pre-school will start for children from three to six years of age.
13. Multiple entries and exits from the chosen course are possible for the students.
14. The credits earned by students in any semester in their graduation courses can be continued and utilised by them when they rejoin the course after study breaks.
15. All school examinations will run semester wise and thus two exams will be held annually.
16. The entire school syllabus will be limited to their respective core knowledge level only.
17. The focused will be on practical and application based knowledge.
18. If a student completes one year in any graduation course, then he/she will get the basic education certificate or diploma certificate upon the completion of second year and degree on completion of the entire course. This way, the student will not waste any year if he drops out from the course in between.
19. The National Curriculum Framework for School Education (NCFSE) 2020-21 has been formulated and undertaken by NCERT based on NEP 2020 after consultation with stakeholders, ministries and other relevant central departments whose objective is to inclusion of local contents and flavours in the national books. Like in context of Arunachal Pradesh the local folklores, festivals, places, history, freedom fighters, etc. would be included in the national framework and may get revised after every five to 10 years.
In order to implement the said revolutionary NEP 2020 effectively, we must assess the following areas:
1. We must see whether our students are mentally prepared for the changes that have been made as our entire education system had got hampered by the Covid-19 pandemic.
2. According to Sl.No.3, 4 and 7 of the NEP’s 2020, we may fall shortages of subject experts apart from regular subjects (Hindi, English, Mathematics, etc.) as students can choose their subjects from middle school onwards, that is Class 6 for vocational courses such as arts, crafts, music, sports (perhaps different sports teachers for the a variety of sports), physical education, etc. and a good number of teachers for languages like Sanskrit, regional languages and the local mother tongue (in Arunachal nearly 22 major tribal languages are their such as Nyshis, Apatani, Adi, Galo, Tagin, Monpa, etc.) which means it requires around 18 to 20 teachers in middle-school sections only, apart from additional various teaching position higher secondary and graduation level.
3. Assess to meet a minimum standard of infrastructures and study materials such as the availability of school buildings, classrooms, science lab, musical instruments, sports items, etc.
4. Accessibility of internet facilities for online classes in the remotely located schools, especially in Arunachal Pradesh.
5. To meet the challenges to train subject teachers other than the regular subjects.
6. Taken care of the confusion of the students due to multiple subject entries and exits as mentioned in the sl. No. 13 above of the NEPs.
7. Taken care of the possibilities of burdens that may arise due to major and minor courses.
If the above mention points are efficiently taken care of, the current NEP 2020 would be perfectly implemented, especially in Arunachal Pradesh.