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Modi Govt Decides To Increase Public Investment To 6% Of GDP Under NEP

The Union Cabinet today decided to increase public investment in the education sector to 6 percent of the GDP very soon. The investment, at present, is around 4.43 per cent of the GDP.

This was announced by the High Education secretary Amit Khare while announcing the 2020 New Education Policy in the presence of Information and Broadcasting Minister Parakash javadekar and HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal.

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The expenses in the sector has increased around Rs 5.6 Lakh Crore from 2014 to 2020.

Around Rs 94,000 crore for education was allocated under the 2020 Union Budget.

The policy also aims to achieve a target of 50 per cent Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in higher education by 2035.

“Following the new education policy and reforms, we will achieve 50% Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) by 2035,” Khare said.

The GER last year in higher education had increased from 25.8 per cent in 2017-18 to 26.3 per cent in 2018-19, while in absolute terms the enrolment increased from 3.66 crores to 3.74 crore students.

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The All India Survey on Higher Education had found that GER for Scheduled Castes had also grown from 21.8 per cent to 23 per cent and Scheduled Tribes from 15.9 per cent to 17.2 percent.

The policy was drafted by an 11-member committee, headed by former ISRO Chairman Dr K Kasturirangan. The draft was submitted to the HRD Ministry on 31 May 2019.

The ministry invited suggestions and around 2 lakh inputs were received. The earlier NEP was formulated in 1986 and modified in 1992.

The policy seeks to expand access to higher education for 50 per cent of high school students by 2035, and achieve universal adult literacy before that date.

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“The cabinet under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given approval to a new education policy for the 21st century. It is important, as for 34 years there were no changes in the education policy,” said Javadekar.

The policy focuses on phasing out affiliated colleges over the next 15 years.

It will allow graded autonomy in academic, administrative and financial matters based on the accreditation status. Also, it will do away with multiple bodies like UGC and AICTE and set up only one single regulator for higher education.

Legal and Medical education will continue to have dedicated regulators.

The policy aims to make mother tongue or regional language as the medium of instruction till class 5 in schools. It also focuses on a multilingual education system which means, the teachers will teach not only in English but also in regional Indian languages.

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The policy aims to hold a common Entrance exam for all higher education institutes by NTA. The exam will be optional and not mandatory.

The cabinet decided to discontinue MPhil courses and all the courses at undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD level will be interdisciplinary. The 4-year programme may also lead to a degree ‘with Research’ if the student completes a rigorous research project.

The government has decided to set up model public universities for holistic and multidisciplinary education, at par with IITs, IIMs and others called MERUs (Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities).

Higher education institutions shall move away from high-stakes examinations towards continuous and comprehensive evaluation.

  • Key features of the NEP are:
  • Focus on skill development beginning from Class 6, with practical assignments for the students.
  • Aims to make mother tongue or regional language as the medium of instruction till class 5 in schools.
  • Focus on preparing teachers for the assessment reforms by 2023.
  • Introducing e-courses in regional languages instead of limiting e-content to Hindi and English.
  • Focus on developing scientific temper in students in schools by integrating 21st-century skills and mathematical thinking
  • Aims to develop play-based curriculum of Early Childhood Care Education (ECCE) that will match the universal standards
  • Introducing board exams that will test students’ knowledge
  • Aims to bring in a single regulatory body for higher education, except for legal and medical education
  • Introducing a new national curriculum framework for ECCE, school, teachers, and adult education.
  • Discontinuance of MPhil. All courses at UG, PG, PhD level to be interdisciplinary.
  • Setting up special education zones for disadvantaged regions and a National Educational Technology Forum (NETF) for imparting knowledge online
  • Making available e-content in Hindi and English, besides in 8 regional languages initially like Kannada, Odia, Bengali among others.
  • Modification of 10+2 structure into a new 5+3+3+4 format, covering ages 3-18. No rigid formation of streams of arts, commerce, science. Students can take up whichever course they want.
  • Coding for students from class 6
  • Developing National Curricular and Pedagogical Framework for Early Childhood Care and Education (NCPFCE) for children up to the age of 8 by NCERT
  • In order to reduce the importance and stress of exams, board examinations will undergo a huge change. The exam will be conducted in two parts: Objective and descriptive. The exam can be conducted twice a year.
  • Students will get a 360-degree holistic report card, which will not only inform them about the marks obtained by them in subjects but also their skills and other important points. Apart from the teachers, the report card will also be reviewed by students.
  • Common entrance exams for all higher education institutes will be held by the National Testing Agency (NTA) twice every year, though the exam will be optional and not mandatory.
NEP a must to skill India - Sentinelassam
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