Haryana Government organised a State level Consultative Meeting to discuss the framework to improve the quality of Education in the Indian State of Haryana. While the first draft of the new education policy is speculated to be prepared by this year’s end, the educationists, experts and ministers presented their recommendations at the consultative meeting. The primary focus of the meeting stood out to sort out the issues in present system and bring forward what changes are essential to be made.
The proposals and recommendations made at a state level consultative meeting for the new education policy being prepared by the Centre are related to important topics such as re-introduction of exams, banning mid-day meals, requirement of primary teachers, minimum wages of labourers and moral education. Here is the limelight on what was discussed and implored for the betterment of education in the consultative meeting.
Re-introduction of Exams:
The starting exams will be conducted only for the students from Class 5 to Class 8. It has also been recommended that a single education board should be formed at the national level and aptitude tests should be conducted on regular basis. Further, it has also been decided that mid-day meals be stopped in Haryana.
Union Minister Smriti Irani had asked for suggestions from students and teachers of every state about their views, the inputs and suggestions for the formation of New Education Policy which should be collected by November 15. On an initial basis suggestions were sought from the grassroots sections, too. In Haryana, meetings were conducted in 6,072 villages, followed by meetings in 119 blocks and then the 21 districts. The suggestions compiled at all these levels were further discussed at the recently held state level meeting. Even the Educationists, officials and NGOs were part of these meetings.
The experts were of the view that since the exams have been scrapped and introduction of no-detention policy, children have become careless towards their studies and are not regular in attending schools. It was observed that absenteeism and disrespect towards teachers had increased. Due to this, the performances of the teachers have also suffered a substantial decrease. The experts presented the views that the exams which have been scrapped for Class 5 to 8, should be revived.
Primary Teachers Shortage:
Further the need for having teachers for different subjects in primary schools was brought into the limelight. The problems pertaining to continuing and comprehensive evaluation were also discussed. Most importantly, the government schools in remote rural areas that are having shortage of staff, must be provided with optimal requirements to meet children’s needs.
Banning Mid-Day Meals:
Haryana Education Minister Ram Bilas Sharma, while addressing the gathering, said that in the past 20 years commercialisation of education has turned out to be the worse cause of the degraded standard of education quality in schools. He was of the view that if the mid-day meals has to be given, then the students should be offered packed food instead of cooking the meal in the school. As per him, the government somewhere spends Rs. 28,00 in cash on each student enrolled in government school as compared to the private school which spends a minimum of Rs. 19000.
Manohar Lal Khattar said that “only a child having good education and high moral values could contribute in nation building.” He said that only reading, writing and mathematics is not education and unless moral values are not included in it, it has no relevance.
Minimum Wages for Labourers:
Even the minimum wages of unskilled labourers has been increased from Rs 5,900 per month to Rs 7,600 per month and of Skilled Labourers from Rs 6536 per month to Rs 9,699 per month.