THE GIST of Editorial for UPSC Exams : 12 February 2020 (The Delhi model of education (The Hindu) )

The Delhi model of education (The Hindu)

Mains Paper 2: Education
Prelims level : Delhi model of education
Mains level : Components of the Delhi model of education


  • In the last five years, the Delhi model of education has caught the attention of people in Delhi and beyond.
  • The AAP government in Delhi has built a model which essentially has five major components and is supported by nearly 25% of the State Budget.

Key components of the model:

Transformation of school infrastructure:

  • The first component of the education model is the transformation of school infrastructure. Dilapidated school buildings that lack basic facilities not only indicate the apathy of the government, but also significantly lower the motivation of teachers and the enthusiasm of students.
  • The AAP government sought to change this by building new, aesthetically designed classrooms equipped with furniture, smart boards, staff rooms, auditoriums, laboratories, libraries, sports facilities and so on.

To train the teachers and principals:

  • The second component is the training of teachers and principals. Apart from the fact that a forum was created to encourage peer learning among them, several opportunities were given to teachers for their professional growth.
  • They visited Cambridge University; the National Institute of Education, Singapore; IIM Ahmedabad; and other models of excellence in India. The exposure to new pedagogy and leadership training enabled Delhi to gradually move away from a uniform training model for all to learning from the best practices in India and abroad.

Reconstituting school management committees:

  • The third component involved engaging with the community by reconstituting school management committees (SMC). The annual budget of each SMC is ₹5-7 lakh. The SMCs can spend this money on any material or activity, such as even hiring teachers on a short-term basis.
  • Regular dialogue between teachers and parents was initiated through mega parent-teacher meetings. Guidelines are provided on how to engage with parents. Invitations for meetings are sent through FM radio, newspaper advertisements, etc.

Reform the curricular:

  • Four, there have been major curricular reforms in teaching learning. In 2016, the AAP government noted that there was a nearly 50% failure rate in Class 9 and admitted that the poor foundational skills of children could be the reason for it. Special initiatives to ensure that all children learn to read, write and do basic mathematics was launched and made part of regular teaching learning activities in schools.
  • Similarly, a ‘happiness curriculum’ was introduced for all children between nursery and Class 8 for their emotional well-being. Further, an ‘entrepreneurship mindset curriculum’ was introduced to develop the problem-solving and critical thinking abilities of children in Classes 9 to 12. Apart from these new curricular initiatives, the focus on existing subjects too ensured better performance in Board examinations by Classes 10 and 12.

No fee hike in private schools:

  • Fifth, there was no fee increase in private schools. While the first four components impacted nearly 34% of children in Delhi’s government schools, arbitrary fee hikes earlier impacted about 40% children who go to private schools. In the past, almost all the schools increased their fee 8-15% annually.
  • The government not only ensured the refund of about ₹32 crore to parents which was excessively charged by private schools, it also ensured that any fee hike proposal was examined by authorised chartered accountants. Thus, for two years no school was allowed to raise its fee.

Agenda 2.0

  • The syllabus of Classes 1 to 8 will be reviewed to emphasise foundational learning skills, the ‘happiness curriculum’ and the ‘deshbhakti’ curriculum.
  • Apart from ensuring that all children can fluently read, write and do mathematics, the focus will be to build emotional resilience in children and ensure that they internalise our core constitutional values by the time they complete eight years of schooling.
  • Apart from that, early childhood care and education will be deepened further through Anganwadis. There will also be nurseries in all government schools.
  • A Delhi Education Board will be set up to promote learning that encourages critical thinking, problem solving and application of knowledge among children. This will prepare them to tackle the challenges of the 21st century with an entrepreneurial mindset. Additionally, for those who have graduated from Delhi schools in the recent past, programmes like spoken English, soft skills and so on will be initiated to raise their employability opportunities.
  • Specialised schools will be created in each of the 29 zones of Delhi to nurture the aptitude and talent of children in the areas of science and technology, literature and language, visual and performing arts, and sports.

Way forward:

Prelims Questions:

Q.1) With reference to the 15th Finance Commission, consider the following statements:
1. The Commission has reduced the vertical devolution — the share of tax revenues that the Centre shares with the states — from 42% to 32%.
2. The Commission intends to set up an expert group to initiate a non-lapsable fund for defence expenditure.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 only
(c) Both
(d) None

Answer: B
Mains Questions:
Q.1) Describe the key components of the Delhi model of education.