The Government of India is currently implementing the Centrally Sponsored Schemes of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan (SSA) and Mid-Day Meal (MDM) for the universalization of elementary education and the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) programme for the universalization of secondary education.
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009
- It lays down the duties of the appropriate Government and the local authority to ensure that good quality elementary education conforming to norms and standards is provided, that curriculum and courses of study are prescribed in a timely manner, and that teachers are trained.
- In order to focus on quality education, the Central RTE Rules have been amended on 20th February, 2017 to include reference on class-wise, subject-wise Learning Outcomes.
- The Learning Outcomes for each class in Languages (Hindi, English and Urdu), Mathematics, Environmental Studies, Science and Social Science up to the elementary stage have, accordingly, been finalized and shared with all States and UTs.
- These would serve as a guideline for States and UTs to ensure that all children acquire appropriate learning level.
- Under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), the State Governments and UT Administrations are supported on several interventions to improve teaching standards, including regular in-service teachers’ training, induction training for newly recruited teachers, training of all untrained teachers to acquire professional qualifications through Open Distance Learning (ODL) mode, recruitment of additional teachers for improving pupil-teacher ratios, academic support for teachers through block and cluster resource centres, continuous and comprehensive evaluation system to equip the teacher to measure pupil performance and provide remedial action wherever required, and teacher and school grants for development of appropriate teaching-learning materials, etc.
PBBB, RAA & RMSA:
- Additionally, the Central Government, supports States and UTs on early grade reading, writing & comprehension, and early Mathematics programmes through a sub-programme of SSA namely ‘Padhe Bharat Badhe Bharat’ (PBBB) in classes I and II.
- Further, the Government has launched Rashtriya Aavishkar Abhiyan (RAA) programme on 09.07.2015, inter alia, as a sub-component of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), to motivate and engage children of the age group from 6-18 years in Science, Mathematics and Technology through observation, experimentation, inference drawing, model building, etc. both through inside and outside classroom activities.
Improving Secondary Education:
- In order to provide quality education to students at the secondary level, various interventions are funded under the RMSA, a Centrally Sponsored Scheme. These include provision for: (i) Appointment of 1 head teacher and 5 teachers (2 language teachers, 1 science teacher, 1 social science and 1 maths teacher) for every new/upgraded secondary school, (ii) additional teachers to improve Pupil Teacher Ratio, (iii) induction and in-service training for Principals, Teachers , Master Trainers and Key Resource Persons, (iv) Maths and Science kits, (v) Lab equipments, (vi) Special teaching for learning enhancement, (vii) ICT facilities in schools, (viii) introduction of vocational education component at the secondary level and (ix) activities under ‘Unnati’ project for improvement in English language skills.
- The Central Board of Secondary Education has decided to make Xth Board Examination compulsory from the academic year 2017-18. It has also introduced a uniform system of Assessment, Examination and Report Card for classes VI-IX that would prepare the students to face the challenge of Class X examination.
- Further, for improving the quality of school education, the School Standards & Evaluation framework, known as ‘Shaala Siddhi’ has been launched by NUEPA, to enable schools to evaluate their performance in a more focused and strategic manner and to facilitate them to make professional judgments for improvement.