Mains Paper 2: Polity
Prelims level: No Detention Policy
Mains level: Education infrastructure
- Last week the Rajya Sabha approved a significant amendment to the
Right To Education Act. It passed the Right of Children to Free and
Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill, 2019 that empowers state governments
to scrap the No Detention Policy (NDP).
- The policy to promote students automatically to higher classes
every year till Class VIII was instituted to check the high number of
dropouts, especially among the socially and economically disadvantaged
- But 25 states raised objections against the NDP, citing it as a
reason for high failure in Classes IX and X.
- In the debate Prakash Javadekar agreed with the naysayers and said
that the NDP has created a situation where a “7th Standard student can’t
solve math problems from Standard 4.”
Why NDP is considered as problematic?
- Pinning the blame for learning deficiencies on the NDP is
- The policy was never envisaged as a standalone reform. In his
Rajya Sabha speech, Javadekar did admit that “Continuous Comprehensive
Evaluation was not taking place”.
- The government has scarcely made any attempt to understand why the
system, that involved tracking the progress of children through a range of
activities over the academic year, proved to be a non-starter.
- The reasons would not have been difficult to find had the HRD
ministry tried to connect a few dots. According to the ministry’s own
records of 2016, for example, government-run elementary schools are short by
5 lakh teachers.
- According to the ASSOCHAM, there is a 50 per cent shortage of
teachers across all government-run schools.
- The already overburdened teachers were not given any training on
how to carry out the crucial reform. They had very little idea on what to
evaluate and how to evaluate it.
- There is no research to suggest that the quality of learning
improves if the child goes over the same curriculum again.
- In contrast, a growing body of scholarly literature has emphasised
that detention damages the morale of students, eventually forcing many many
of whom belong to the marginalised sections to quit.
- In his Rajya Sabha speech, Javadekar did try to allay fears of an
increase in the drop-out rate.
- The HRD ministry would do well to address some of the systemic
problems of the Indian education system, given that there is enough evidence
to show that uninspiring curricula, poorly-trained teachers and inadequate
infrastructure are the real bottlenecks in improving learning outcomes.
- Removing these snags will require creative solutions, not
Q.1) T.S.R Subramanian committee was constituted for which of the
(a) To suggest reforms in civil services.
(b) To review models of Public Private Partnership.
(c) To suggest a new national education policy.
(d) To suggest reforms in election process.
Q.1) What do you mean by the no-detention policy? How it can be improved?