63rd meeting of Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) was held on 19 August reviewing the CABE proposal of ‘no-detention policy upto class 8’ and ‘reintroducing board examination of class 10’. The meeting was being chaired by Union Human Resources Development Minister Smt. Smriti Irani including other chairpersons from each state.
CABE sub-committee headed by former Education Minister of Haryana Geeta Bukkal, had submitted a report earlier to the UPA government in year 2012, but the then HRD Minister M. M. Pallam Raju stated that a detailed study was needed to be done in order to make any decision on extending Right to Education Act. The proposal never arrived to a final decision.
This was the first meeting under newly formed NDA government. Owing to the increased rate of drop outs in the middle schools, the CABE in the meeting held on August 19 proposed for the extension of the Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act upto class 10.
After a day-long meeting held in Delhi, HRD Minister Smriti Irani had not come up with any decision and mentioned that the State Education Ministers from across the country agrees to revoke the RTE Act but they all would have to give in writing within a month to the Central government for any further actions. She also stated that in order to bring changes in these policies, the Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act might need to be amended. The ‘no-detention policy’ and making class 10 board examination optional, both were included in the Act in 2010.
The panel consisted of education ministers from 19 different states, nominated members of CABE, officials from different offices and distinguished people from different disciplines. As per the sources, the main agenda of CABE in the meeting was to implement the class promotion system upto class 10, putting hardly any approach in bringing back the class 10 examination. Other aspects, which was put forth by the CABE in the meeting was, setting up new education policies for the nation.
Smt. Smriti Irani however said to a local news paper that the suggestion made by the CABE needs ‘comprehensive views’ and the government will all necessary actions possible to ensure the upbringing of education system in India. She also said that, “This is a part of whole approach. One can’t have a piecemeal approach. One has to have a holistic approach.”
The officials from HRD Ministry would be traveling to different states in the month of September in order to further consulting with the education ministers of particular states.