Education is about discipline, development, curiosity, creativity, eliminating poverty leading to employment and prosperity.
The New Education Policy (NEP), approved by the Union Cabinet renamed The Ministry of Human Resource and Development as The Ministry of Education.
“Under the National Education Policy 2020, the current 10+2 structure of school curricula has been replaced with 5+3+3+4, dividing the structure into a foundational stage from 3 to 8, three years of pre-primary education from 8 to 11, a preparatory stage from 11 to 14, while the secondary stage would comprise 14 to 18 years.
This will bring in children of the age group of 3-6 years into the ambit of formal education and will lead to the creation of a strong foundation base.
Child’s mother tongue being used as the medium of instructions till grade 5, a new school curriculum with coding and vocational studies from class 6, the renewed focus on arts, humanities, the importance of research, mandating all institutions to offer a multi-disciplinary form of education will ensure that we will skill our young people for life and prepare them for diverse careers in the future.
In addition, a new system of self, peer, and teacher assessment will give parents and children a 360-degree progress report imbibed with new skills learned during the academic year.
Also, the inclusion of professional and choice-based disciplines as part of higher education will give students a whole new dimension towards honouring soft-skills
The flexibility of subjects, credit transfer and multiple entry-exit points will ensure that everyone can complete a college education and learn the subjects of their choice. The students will not be restricted to narrow domains.
Teacher training institutes will be strengthened and linked to multidisciplinary universities. This will help India to prepare high-quality teachers.
A common aptitude test for undergraduate admissions will ease off the pressure from students to prepare for multiple exams. The CAT will be designed in a way that most universities can identify the student skill set for admissions from the same test.
The historic decisions to reduce curriculum content, conduct teaching and learning in a more interactive manner, adoption of experiential learning, among others will provide well-diversified exposure to students, enable them to study subjects according to their specific interests and build the power of critical and analytical thinking in them.
Multiple entry and exit points with appropriate certification that allow for awarding of certificate after 1 year, Advanced Diploma after 2 years, Bachelor’s Degree after 3 years and Bachelor’s with Research after 4 years, along with an Academic Bank of Credit will promote ease of attaining education in the coming times.
Transformation in the assessment of students comprising of easier Board Exams, 360-degree & multidimensional progress report, among others, will reduce the fear & pressure of exams, promote application-based learning & assessment and test core competencies and overall development of students.
Setting up of National Educational Technology Forum (NETF) will boost digital learning and support the Digital India vision and mission of the Government.
One of the interesting elements of the policy is to provide infrastructural and academic support to dropouts by formulating different ways of learning with the help of formal and informal education modes. There is a special provision for socially and financially challenged groups in the new policy. And as we move towards a new normal of online teaching, the cabinet has even dedicated a unit to manage digital infrastructure, digital content and capacity building under their wings to make sure all the e-education needs are fulfilled.
One of the key aspects that the policy has addressed is the implementation of the choice based credit system – a multi-disciplinary approach which will provide flexibility to students to choose between programs of choice. It will also allow students to accumulate & retain credits which will enable them to continue their learning process from where they had left, in case they discontinue for some reason.
NEP proposes the revision and revamping of all aspects of the education structure to create a new system that is aligned with the aspirational goals, freeing students from the stresses of high-stakes examinations, tuition culture and an education system based on memorization.
Increased exposure to vocational education, vocational exposure at early ages in middle and secondary school, internship opportunities to learn vocational subjects throughout Grades 6-12, among others will promote practical education and exposure at an early age and make students ready for the real world.