Five Big Changes That Took Place In Education Sector In India

With the implementation of New Education Policy (NEP) and the covid crisis still lurking, this year has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride for the Education sector in India. It’s been about two years since the country’s universities and colleges have been shut and the digital divide has taken over.

Here are five big changes or major events that have been observed in the past year.

1. The Digital Divide

The shift of the learning process to virtual spaces rendered a new sort of learning gap for the children of India. We even witnessed the suicide of Aishwarya Reddy, a Delhi University student owing to the inability of affording her education, and many such cases. While answering to the questions of Digital Divide in Lok Sabha Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister of Education revealed shocking statistics where about 70% of students from Jammu and Kashmir and Madhya Pradesh could not access digital devices. States like Jharkhand, Karnataka, Assam, and Bihar recorded the highest numbers.

2. Implications of New Education Policy

Several states like Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh have started taking steps towards its implementation. This year also saw officiating of NEP in several universities alongside protests from both teachers and students against it with #RejectNEP trending at different times of the year.

3. CBSE’s Changed Pattern

To survive the test of time, the Central Board of Secondary Education introduced a new pattern for its academic session 2021-2022. In the new pattern, examinations will be held twice a year with a 50% syllabus for each. The First term examination will be a 90-minute exam with case-based and assertion reasoning type MCQs. The second term to be held in March-April will be a two-hour-long exam with both long and short questions.

4. Dropouts of India

According to a Right to Education Forum policy brief at the start of the year, about 10 million girls in India were at the risk of dropping out. Educational Minister, Dharmendra Pradhan said in August that around 15 crore children were out of the education system then. The dropout rate for India at the secondary school level stood at 17% with four states recording up to 30% drop out rates as per the UDISE report.

5. Academia’s Casteism

From the IIT Madras Professor who resigned owing to casteism in his institution to Deepa Mohanan’s fight, various cases have come up that show the inherent casteist nature of our country’s education sector. The UGC even wrote to the Vice-Chancellors of universities to ensure no caste discrimination takes place at the varsities. The letter advised the administrations to be sensitive while dealing with such cases and to develop a portal for redressal for the same.

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