Deputy Chief Minister and Education Minister of Delhi Manish Sisodia on Wednesday announced a major school education reform programme titled ‘Chunauti 2018‘. This plan seeks to check drop-out of students from government schools and improve the quality of education, especially for weaker students. Under this scheme, students will be mapped and grouped and the weakest students given ‘special focus’ to enhance learning levels from Class 6 to 9.
The government will especially focus on weakest students of class 9 and ensure that they pass class 10 by 2018, a move aimed at ‘leaving no child behind’ in its schools, a challenge it has set for itself under this plan.
Mr. Sisodia said the ‘best and dynamic teachers’ will work on the weakest students in all schools, besides additional remedial classes for them. Under this plan students studying in government schools, especially Class IX students, will be helped to overcome problems being faced by them because of the ill effects of the No Detention Policy (NDP).
The No Detention Policy came into force with the enactment of the Right to Education Act of 2009. The policy has resulted in carelessness and lack of responsibility on the part of teachers and students both. Under the no detention policy, students up to Class 9 are easily passed over to the next grade even though they may not have acquired the requisite education and skills of the previous grade. Then when they reach grade 9 they fail to pass the final exams and finally drop out because of the failure.
“No-detention policy is not the entire solution to improve quality education. The passing percentage of Class 9 is decreasing every year,” Sisodia remarked.
No Detention policy is not the solution
We come with Chunauti 2018.
No Child Will Be Left Behind.
— Education Minister (@Minister_Edu) 29 June 2016
“In 2013-14, 44 per cent of students of Class 9 failed to pass while 48.26 percent of students did not succeed during 2014-15. In 2015-16, 49.22 per cent of students of Class 9 failed to pass the examinations. We will have to first focus on improving quality education under ‘Chunauti 2018’,” he said.
Manish Sisodia said that though Delhi government has already proposed doing away with NDP, in the Right to Education Act the proposed bill is pending with the Centre. Meanwhile, the government can take some steps on its own to improve the quality of education in its schools.
Sisodia said, “There are students who are intelligent but there are also who are weak in writing, reading and others. Under ‘Chunauti 2018’, we will map these students and divide them into different groups. Thereafter, government will work on improving their skills.”
Students from Classes VI to IX, will be regrouped into classes based on a Base Line assessment, which will be conducted in the second week of July, for example the weakest being in one group. Since the learning levels will vary in all classes, teachers have been directed to deal with classes in different ways.
He further added that the grouping of students based on their learning level is solely for the purpose of enabling the teachers to address the learning needs of different sets of children in a more systematic and effective manner.
“The government intends for the weakest students to receive special attention from the best teachers, so as to bring them to the level of the rest of the class,” Sisodia said.
Heads of schools will map all children who have not cleared the Class IX exam in 2016, and organise meetings between the parents and teachers, in July this year, so that the students may be encouraged to come to school regularly and are dissuaded from dropping out.
“The Delhi government is determined to not allow the careers and lives of these students to be scarred by failure for little fault of theirs. The idea behind ‘Chunauti 2018’ is that by the year 2018, all students enrolled in Class IX in the academic year 2016-2017, regardless of their learning levels at this point, will be trained and mentored to successfully appear for Class X examinations in 2018. No child will be left behind,” said Sisodia.
According to him, extra study material has been prepared by a group of teachers and principals to enhance skills of the weakest wards, and teachers will be rewarded as per the performance of their students.