The National Educational Policy 2020 announced by the Ministry of Education, is a critical move. This is the third National Education Policy, released under the Prime Ministership of Narendra Modi. This will definitely serve as a new dawn of the Indian Educational system. Read about the features of New Government Education Policy in India below.[speaker-mute]
- Introduction to National Education Policy 2020
- What purpose does a National Education Policy serve?
- What is the purpose of this National Education Policy?
- Part I. School Education
- New Education Policy of India 2020: The Foundation of Learning Early Childhood
- New Education Policy of India 2020: Changes in Curriculum in Schools
- Part II. Higher Education
- Editor’s Note
Introduction to National Education Policy 2020
Education forms the foundation for achieving our full potential. With this, we can aim at developing an equitable and just society and contribute to national development.
Providing universal access to quality education is the key to India’s continued ascent. The most suitable path for developing and maximizing our country’s rich talents and resources is the ‘Universal high-quality education’.It would be for the good of the individual, our society, our nation, and the world.
What purpose does a National Education Policy serve?
An NEP is a comprehensive structure to guide development in the field of education in the country.
The requirement for such a policy was first realized in 1964 when Congress MP Siddheshwar Prasad criticized the then government for lacking a vision and philosophy for education. In the same year, an Education Commission was constituted. It was a 17-member Education Commission. Its head was the then UGC Chairperson D S Kothari. This body aimed to draft a national and coordinated policy on education. Based on the suggestions and arguments of this Commission, Parliament passed the first education policy in 1968.
A new NEP usually comes up every few decades. To date, India has had three. The first came in 1968 under Indira Gandhi.Then the second in 1986 under Rajiv Gandhi. The NEP of 1986 was revised in 1992 when P V Narasimha Rao was our Prime Minister.
Now, the third Government Education Policy was released in 2020, under the Prime Ministership of Narendra Modi.
What is the purpose of this National Education Policy?
India will house the highest population of youth in the world over the next decade. Thus our potential to provide high-quality educational opportunities to them will determine the future of our country.
This National Education Policy 2020 is the first education policy of the 21st century and targets to solve many growing developmental issues of our country.
This Government Education Policy proposes the revision of the Indian education structure. It aims at the restructuring of all aspects of the Indian education system, including its regulation and governance. And to create a new system that is aligned with the aspirational goals of 21st-century education, including SDG4. it shall have India’s traditions and value systems as its very foundation.
Part I. School Education
This new Education Policy of India 2020 intends to shift from 10+2 structure in school education. This previous structure will be modified with a new curricular restructuring into 5+3+3+4 layout, covering ages 3-18 as shown in the representative figure.
Age groups are divided as:
- 3-8 years (foundational)
- 8-11 (preparatory)
- 11-14 (middle)
- and 14-18 (secondary).
|Foundational Stage||in two parts, that is, 3 years of Anganwadi/pre-school + 2 years in primary school in Grades 1-2; both together covering ages 3-8|
|Preparatory Stage||Grades 3-5, covering ages 8-11|
|Middle Stage||Grades 6-8, covering ages 11-14|
|Secondary Stage||Grades 9-12 in two phases, i.e., 9 and 10 in the first and 11 and 12 in the second, covering ages 14-18|
New Education Policy of India 2020: The Foundation of Learning Early Childhood
Over 85% of a child’s cumulative brain development occurs before the age of 6. Thus it is important to give appropriate care and stimulation to the brain in the early years. In the present time, quality ECCE is not available to crores of young children. And particularly to children from socio-economically deprived backgrounds. Strong investment in ECCE has the potential to give all young children such access.
Thus, universal provisioning of quality early childhood development, care, and education needs to be achieved earliest. This should not happen any later than the year of 2030. This needs to be done to ensure that all the students setting foot in Grade 1 are school ready.
- For universal access to ECCE, Anganwadi Centres will be improved and provided with high-quality infrastructure, pieces of equipment, and well-trained Anganwadi teachers/workers.
- It is envisioned that before the age of 5 every child will enter into a “Preparatory Class” or “Balavatika” (that is, before Class 1), which has an ECCE-qualified teacher.
- Anganwadi workers/teachers with qualifications of 10+2 and above shall be given a 6-month certificate programme in ECCE; and those with lower educational qualifications shall be given a one-year diploma programme covering early literacy, numeracy, and other relevant aspects of ECCE.
New Education Policy of India 2020: Changes in Curriculum in Schools
To achieve this, the New Government Education Policy of India 2020 aims to work on the following points:
- Restructuring the school curriculum and pedagogy in a new 5+3+3+4 design
- Holistic development of learners
- Reduction in the curriculum course/content to enhance essential learning and critical thinking
- Experiential learning
- Empower students through flexibility in course choices
- Multilingualism and the power of language
- Reforming Assessment for Student Development
By National Educational Policy: It has been planned that at all stages, experiential learning shall be adopted. This will include:
- hands-on learning
- arts-integrated and sports-integrated education
- story-telling-based pedagogy, etc.
In order to fill the gap in learning outcomes, classroom teaching will move, towards competency-based learning.
Art-integration is a cross-curricular pedagogical approach. It utilizes various aspects and forms of art and culture across subjects. This art-integrated approach will make the links between education and culture strong.
Sports-integration is another cross-curricular pedagogical approach. It utilizes physical activities including games and sports. This would help in developing skills such as teamwork, collaboration, leadership,self-initiative, discipline, responsibility, citizenship, etc. This would also help students adopt fitness as a lifelong attitude as visioned in the Fit India Movement.
Empower students through flexibility in course choices
National Educational Policy gives, the students will have the flexibility and choice of subjects to study. Particularly in secondary school – including subjects in physical education, the arts and crafts, and vocational skills – so that they can design their own paths of learning, study, career and life plans. Holistic development and a wide choice of subjects and courses year to year will be the new distinguishing key-feature of the updated secondary school education. There will be no strict separation among ‘curricular’, ‘extracurricular ’, or ‘co-curricular’, among ‘arts’, ‘humanities’, and ‘sciences’, or between ‘vocational’ or ‘academic’ streams.
Reforming Assessment for Student Development
The aim of assessment in our educational system will shift from a summative one to a more regular and formative one. Currently, it tested rote memorization skills. Now, it would test higher-order skills, such as analysis, critical thinking, problem-solving and conceptual clarity. The prime motive of assessment will indeed be for the enhancement of learning.
Part II. Higher Education
The following are the key-features in the National Educational Policy:
- aiming for a higher educational system comprising of wide-range, multidisciplinary universities and colleges, with at least one in or near every district
- with more HEIs across India that offer a medium of instruction or programs in local/Indian languages;
- National Educational Policy aims for a more multidisciplinary undergraduate education;
- moving towards faculty and institutional autonomy;
- reaffirming the integrity of faculty and institutional leadership positions through merit appointments and career progression based on teaching, research, and service;
- increased access, equity, and inclusion through a range of measures, including greater opportunities for outstanding public education
- scholarships by private/philanthropic universities for disadvantaged and underprivileged students
- online education, and Open Distance Learning (ODL); and all infrastructure and learning materials accessible and available to learners with disabilities.
You can read more details about the National Educational Policy in the official documents: here
Education forms the foundation of the society. In a few decades, India will have the greatest population of youths across the globe. Thus, it is very important to prepare a system which will help our youth to become great learners and leaders. For this to happen this new National Educational Policy can play a very important role towards their growth. Their growth is proportional to the growth of our nation. Thus, this National Education Policy will certainly be a critical factor in the development of our nation.