Updated: April 26, 2018 1:20:40 pm
The proposed new national education policy could borrow a leaf out of the recently revised Rajasthan schoolbooks, providing for ‘localising’ history curriculum for primary and upper primary classes across the country i.e. no world affairs till Class 8. If recommendations pushed by Rajasthan school education minister Vasudev Devnani are accepted, the Rajasthan experiment could be replicated across the country. Devnani – a core member of the Central Advisory Board of Education which is the apex body advising the Centre in the field of education – has pushed for localising the curriculum for Classes 1 to 8. The state government has already revised its curriculum for these classes, with increased local content.
“We have made several suggestions to be incorporated in the NEP.like we did in Rajasthan, from Class 1 to 5, the curriculum should have 75 per cent state and 25 per cent country-related content, from 6th to 8th, it should have 50 per cent state and 50 per cent country. After Class 9, the student can learn about the world,” Devnani told The Indian Express in an interview. “What will a Class 1 student do by knowing who is the president of the US? He should know about the chief minister, collector, his district, his language, culture, history,” he said. The minister said it was important for children in these classes to know about their “home” first. “They should be taught life values.history should be corrected.like we did here till Class 9.added chapters providing knowledge about more than 200 veer and veeranagna (brave men and women).the response to these suggestions have been positive,” Devnani said.
The minister said the ruling BJP government in the state was committed to making Rajasthan a global education hub. “We will be holding a large education festival featuring world class seminars and discussions etc on April 8th and 9th, in collaboration with (Dubai based) GEMS foundation. If the response is good, we will take it down to the divisional level in order to provide greater exposure to students,” he said. Devnani also outlined several new reforms the state government had undertaken to improve quality of education in the state including regulating private education sector through an official portal and decentralising education administration by deploying Panchayat Education Officers.
“We have already taken several steps to regulate private sector.like in fees etc.now we will require every private school to register themselves on our portal. They will have to provide details about their staff, qualifications, aadhaar numbers of students etc. This will improve monitoring,” he said. “The Panchayat Education Officer (PEO) would lead to decentralisation of education administration. The senior-most principal of a senior secondary school in the panchayat would be designated as the PEO and will be responsible for keeping service records, granting leave to teachers.issuing their salaries etc,” Devnani said.The ministry, he said, had set up major targets for enhancing the education infrastructure in government schools across the state.
“After having achieved almost universal coverage of toilets in schools, we are now looking at establishing Information Communication Technology labs in all 13,500 secondary and senior secondary schools. Besides, we are also aiming at universal availability of sports grounds by linking them to MNREGA,” Devnani said. Overcoming staff shortages was another challenge the government was working towards addressing. The vacancies in government schools had dropped to 24 per cent, from the 52 per cent figure when he took charge of the education portfolio, Devnani claimed.
The minister also said he stood by his remarks about cow being the only animal that inhaled as well as exhaled Oxygen. “I have four documents, which have names of two or three German scientists that prove this.its being researched.whatever I said I stand by it .till these documents are countered specifically,” Devnani said.
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