The Centre’s new mission to ensure that every Class 3 child has foundational literacy and numeracy within five years could be rolled out in 2021.
GS-II: Social Justice (Issues related to Education, Welfare Schemes, Government Policies and Initiatives, Issues arising out of the design and implementation of schemes)
Dimensions of the Article:
- About NIPUN Bharat Mission
- Why was the NIPUN Bharat Scheme needed?
- Samagra Shiksha Scheme
About NIPUN Bharat Mission
- National Initiative for Proficiency in reading with Understanding and Numeracy (NIPUN Bharat) is a scheme to ensure that every child achieves desired learning competencies in reading, writing, and numeracy by end of Grade 3, by the year 2026-27 – to provide an enabling environment in a bid to ensure universal acquisition of foundational literacy and numeracy.
- The NIPUN Bharat Mission is a part of school education programme, Samagra Shiksha.
- NIPUN Bharat initiative will be implemented by school education department of Union government and to implement it, a five-tier implementation mechanism will be set up at national, state, district, block, and school levels across all states and Union territories.
- No additional funding is being allocated for the mission. Instead, money is being allocated from the Samagra Shiksha scheme, which saw a 20% drop in its budget in 2021.
- So far, the goal has simply been to enrol children in school, and then to ensure that they finish Class 10. This mission specifies stage-wise learning goals to ensure that students are acquiring the necessary building blocks.
- The NIPUN Bharat strategy includes changes in curriculum and teaching methods to include more activity, art and story-telling, creation of print-rich materials and resources, teacher training, and stress-free assessment methods in order to reach these goals.
- NIPUN Bharat also emphasises the importance of using a child’s mother tongue in teaching, a principle of the National Education Policy 2020, which received some criticism.
- Although the National Education Policy had included a 2025 deadline to achieve the goal, the Centre has pushed back the target date to 2026-27, given that COVID-19 has already disrupted two academic years.
- A National Achievement Survey of Class 3 students to be conducted this November will set a baseline to track future progress.
Why was the NIPUN Bharat Scheme needed?
- Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) found that less than 30% of Class 3 students could read at Class 2 level or do double digit subtraction in 2018.
- ASER report in 2020 found that only 25% of school-going children in four to eight age group do not have age-appropriate cognitive and numeracy skills. Thus, there is a huge learning deficit at very early stage.
Samagra Shiksha Scheme
- Samagra Shiksha is an integrated scheme for school education extending from pre-school to class XII to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education at all levels of school education.
- The Scheme is being implemented as a Centrally Sponsored Scheme and the fund sharing pattern for the scheme between Centre and States is at present in the ratio of 90:10 for the North-Eastern States and the Himalayan States and 60:40 for all other States and Union Territories with Legislatures and 100% centrally sponsored for Union Territories without Legislature.
- It subsumes the three Schemes of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher Education (TE).
- The vision of the Scheme is to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education from pre-school to senior secondary stage in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) for Education.
- The main emphasis of the Scheme is on improving the quality of school education by focussing on the two T’s – Teacher and Technology.
The major objectives of the Scheme are
- Provision of quality education and enhancing learning outcomes of students;
- Bridging Social and Gender Gaps in School Education;
- Ensuring equity and inclusion at all levels of school education;
- Ensuring minimum standards in schooling provisions;
- Promoting Vocationalisation of education;
- Support States in implementation of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009; and
- Strengthening and up-gradation of SCERTs/State Institutes of Education and DIET as a nodal agencies for teacher training.
-Source: The Hindu