New education policy sets a new model for the coming decades

Seventy-five years of Indian independence is also a good time to assess the educational structures, pedagogy and impact of the nation.

The development of the New Education Policy, 2020, delved into this crucial question before defining a new model for the coming decades.

This new model, however, comes at a time when India’s education system is being tested by an unprecedented situation – delivering teaching-learning amid a pandemic that has shut down the physical campus for over d one year, saw a large number of children drop out of school. school and many more are grappling with a gaping digital divide between urban and rural India.

The NEP document notes that “the recent increase in epidemics and pandemics requires that we be ready with alternative modes of quality education whenever and wherever traditional and in-person modes of education are not possible.”

He then points to the biggest challenge posed by the pandemic – the digital divide.

NEP 2020 observes that “the benefits of online / digital education can only be realized if the digital divide is closed through concerted efforts, such as the Digital India campaign and the availability of computing devices. It is important that the use of technology for online and digital education adequately addresses equity concerns. ”

The recently tabled parliamentary report on “Plans to close the learning gap caused by school lockdowns as well as the review of online and offline instructions and exams and plans to reopen schools”, examines the extent and impact of the digital divide.

He notes that 320 million children in India have not entered a classroom for more than a year and have already lost a tenth of all their schooling. More than 240 million schoolchildren have been affected by the pandemic, only 11.58% of schools across the country have internet facilities, although several states have not spent the allocated funds to develop ICT facilities in schools.

The report further cites a January 2021 study by Azim Premji University in 44 districts in five states that found that 92% of children lost at least one specific language ability and 82% lost at least one specific mathematical ability in the classroom. previous year, in all classes. .

“Thus, school closures have not only resulted in a loss of curricular learning but have given rise to a generalized phenomenon of regression (forgetting) by students of learning from the previous class,” notes the report.

The parliamentary panel report gets to the heart of the matter.

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