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National Education Policy: What Changes in Education System & How it Affects Students, Teachers

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Three years after it was first introduced, the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP) is gradually being rolled out in schools and higher education centres. The NEP, which comes into effect during the 2023-24 academic year, will have a slew of changes from syllabus to structure, from higher education to introduction of mother tongue.

The new policy will universalise education from pre-school to secondary level and revolutionise the Indian education system, which was marred by differences in syllabuses and teaching patterns across the country. With the policy, the government is aiming at bridging the social divide, reducing dropout to zero and enhancing learning outcomes.

Top 5 highlights of NEP 2020

  1. Multiple Entry and Exit Options: The NEP proposes multiple entry and multiple exit options for the students in higher education. According to the provision, the students can drop their course and resume it at a later stage as and when they desire or deem it worth pursuing.
  2. 5+3+3+4 structure: The conventional 10+2 school curricula structure will be replaced by a 5+3+3+4 structure corresponding to ages 3-8, 8-11, 11-14, and 14-18 years respectively. The first five years denote formative years where a child will spend the years in preschool and primary school. The next three years will be preparation phase which is followed by middle school. The last 4 years will be secondary education.
  3. Use of Mother Tongue: NEP focuses on the use of mother tongue as the medium of instruction. However, it does not mandate the use of a particular language on anyone. The use of the mother tongue is expected to result in a higher rate of parental participation in a child’s learning.
  4. Common entrance exams for Universities: The NEP also calls for Central University Entrance Test (CUET) for undergraduate and postgraduate courses, which would allow students to sit for multiple universities through a common test. It would also save them from the hassles of appearing separately for multiple tests and will save their time, energy and money.
  5. Multidisciplinary learning: The new policy has proposed inter-disciplinary education as a holistic approach across all sciences in order to ensure knowledge harmony and integrity. Students can acquire courses ranging from science, technology, mathematics, liberal arts, languages, humanities, social sciences, professional skills, vocational skills through multidisciplinary and holistic learning.

Why Is NEP Termed as Revolutionary?

The NEP has tried to prioritise learning, creativity and curiosity among students and provide them with a level playing field by removing the differences in syllabus, boards and states. It has tried to modernise education to match the need of the hour by including courses such as Industry 4.0 tools, robotics and astronomy.

The NEP has also removed unnecessary courses like the MPhil programmes, which existed as a precursor to the PhD programmes.

The policy has also focussed on quality teacher recruitment and training as the teachers will now be recruited through a four-year integrated programme.

Will it Affect Students, Teachers & Institutes?

Students: The National Education Policy will be very beneficial for the students as it will foster in-depth comprehension of knowledge and its practical application. The students will hone their critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, and interdisciplinary skills through the new policy. The students will be the ultimate winners when the policy comes into implementation.

Teachers: The NEP calls for changes in the teachers’ training and it will amend ways of how education is imparted. Teachers will have to change their skills and methods to increase student participation and promote ‘inquiry-based and discussion-based methods’.

Institutes: The NEP challenges the existing educational infrastructure in several educational institutions across the country and questions the ‘qualifications’ provided by these institutions. The institutions will have to undergo drastic change to undergo the shift and adapt with the new practices.

When will NEP be Implemented?

Most states have already started implementing the National Education Policy wholly or adopted most parts of the policy. However, some opposition-ruled states like Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu have delayed implementation and spoken against the implementation.

Karnataka has become the first state to announce that it would repeal the NEP from the next academic year. Kerala, meanwhile, is yet to adopt the provisions of the policy.

Several central universities have now started taking admission through the Common University Entrance Test (CUET) for higher education courses.

Do States Have Power to Reject NEP?

Under the constitution, states can choose not to adopt the policies or curriculum designed by the Centre either fully or partially, as education is a subject under the concurrent list. Under the list, both the Parliament and the state assemblies have the power to legislate over affairs including education. Moreover, states are free to draw up their own curriculum and print their own textbooks.

source by : News 18

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