Minister of State for Human Resource Development Dr Satya Pal Singh on Thursday said his ministry is taking a number of initiatives to improve the quality of education at all levels in the country.
“Several initiatives are currently being undertaken in this direction such as in elementary education, the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009 and Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) programme aims for improvements in school infrastructure and in teaching and learning,” the minister said.
While replying to a question in Rajya Sabha, the minister said the vision of the MHRD is to realize India’s human resource potential to its fullest in the education sector with equity and inclusion.
“Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), ICT in Schools, Centrally Sponsored Scheme on Teacher Education (CSSTE), Shaala Siddhi, Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan are being implemented to improve the quality of secondary education,” he said.
The minister said that having nearly reached the goals of universalizing elementary education, and making substantial gains in expanding access to secondary and higher education, the focus is on improving the quality of education at all levels.
“Various other schemes such as Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), Global Initiative for Academics Network (GIAN), Impacting Research, Innovation & Technology (IMPRINT), Technical Education Quality Improvement Programme (TEQIP), Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya National Mission on Teachers and Teaching (PMMMNMTT), Study Webs of Active-Learning for Young Aspiring Minds (SWAYAM), National Digital Library, campus connect programme, Uchhatar Avishkar Abhiyan, Unnat Bharat Abhiyan are being implemented to improve the quality of higher education,” he said.
Recognizing the centrality of states both in policy formulation and effective implementation of education reforms, the MHRD has been regularly convening meetings of the Central Advisory Board on Education (CABE) — a composite and highest advisory body on education.
“All the schemes implemented by the Government of India are in consultation with the states which meet regularly through the meetings of CABE. Similarly, all reform initiatives are also through consensus evolved between the Centre and the states through the CABE,” he said.
With the objective to make India a knowledge superpower, the minister said that the government is in the process of framing a New Education Policy (NEP) to meet the changing dynamics of people’s requirement with regard to quality education, innovation and research.
“Initially, a Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy was constituted which submitted its report in May, 2016 and thereafter, the ministry prepared ‘Some Inputs for the Draft National Education Policy, 2016’. Both these documents are treated as inputs for policy formulation,” the minister said.
The minister said that suggestions and inputs have been received from various stakeholders such as, individuals, organisations, autonomous bodies, Hon’ble MPs, Central ministries and state governments on various aspects of education.
“The exercise of preparing a New Education Policy is still going on as a Committee for Draft National Education Policy under the Chairmanship of Dr K. Kasturirangan has been constituted which will consider and examine all inputs and suggestions and is expected to submit its report by 31.03.2018,” he said, adding, “The committee is in the process of drafting this policy for which several meetings have been held so far.”