ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Need for Quality Upgradation and Inclusivity

Education in Disarray

The chairperson of the Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy writes on the committee's findings and what ails education in India today.

Late in 2015, the Ministry of Human Resource Development appointed a five-member committee to help “evolve a draft New Education Policy.” The committee, chaired by this writer, submitted its report with more than 90 recommendations to the ministry on 27 May 2016, which is now engaged in studying it and considering the policy announcements to revamp the education sector. The purpose of this article is not to discuss the recommendations of the committee or to critically appraise them—it is rather to outline the broad contours of the education sector in India as the committee found it, and comment on the salient features that need to be addressed. To put it bluntly, the committee found the current state of education in India to be “in disarray,” pointing to the need for major remedial measures.

In the course of its deliberations, the committee “discovered” the vastness and great variety in the education sector.There are at least 200 fields of specialisation and expertise in the scope of the sector’s operations. Indeed, just as every newspaper reader and television viewer in the country consider themselves “experts” in politics, the committee surmised that there are at least 20 million “experts” on education—every parent, schoolteacher, and anyone else connected with the sector generally consider themselves eligible to render advice on what “needs to be done.” It should also be mentioned that many private citizens the committee met in the course of its work had a greater understanding of the issues compared to many self-determined “experts.”

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