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India


Sisodia writes to Nishank on school reopening plan

Sisodia writes to Nishank on school reopening plan
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New Delhi, Jun 6 (UNI) Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia wrote a letter to Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister, Ramesh Pokharyal “Nishank”, supporting the HRD Ministry in its initiative to plan the reopening of schools with “reasonable guidelines”.

In his letter Mr Sisodia writes, “As Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said sometime back that ‘we need to learn to live with Corona’, reopening of schools with a reasonable precaution is a step in the right direction”.

Setting the context of his suggestions, Mr Sisodia said, “First of all we need to assure every child, irrespective of age and social class that they are important to us and all of them have equal right to physical and intellectual space of their respective schools. The clamor of online teaching or older children coming to school first and not the younger ones should be put to rest”.

He explained his point by saying that online teaching can only complement the learning in school, not replace it. And also cautioned that no measures be suggested which accords any primacy to children of secondary grades onwards vis a vis primary because learning across all stage is important, whether it is about preparing for board exams or learning to read and write.

He further pointed out that since we need to learn to live with Corona now, it would be better if the already existing learning space, which is school, take up that role. But before doing that, parents needs to be taken in confidence and they should be explained about the risk factor with facts.

In this regard he also quoted ICMR COVID study, which says that the attack rate (people affected per one lakh population) is lowest among 0-9 years age group.

Mr Sisodia suggested that distinct approach be followed in Early childhood education and Elementary grades segment vis a vis Secondary and Senior Secondary.

For children in the age group three-four years which is grades Nursery to Class 8, he recommended “establishing the foundation of lifelong learning” with a goal of “learning to learn”.

He said that “instead of continuing the remaining part of schooling with reduced syllabus let us move beyond the tendency to just complete the syllabus”. Instead, fluency in reading with understanding and oral expression, writing different genre of text, number sense, emotional resilience, internalization of healthy and hygienic practice, etc should be the key areas of engagement between children and their teachers.

For Secondary and Senior Secondary grades, he suggested that NCERT and CBSE should be asked to remove the stranglehold of syllabus and rote learning oriented exam from the academic life of a child.

He also pointed that the syllabus be reduced by at least 30 per cent across all grades and subjects. Emphasis should be on “depth in learning and understanding rather than spreading far and wide”. Combine this with exam reforms.

He suggested that CBSE should move away from one time high stake exam of class 10 and 12 to a model of continuous evaluation so that students can take online exam whenever they want.

His third suggestion is in the area of teachers training. “We cannot expect a fundamental change in education & examination unless our teachers are ready and prepared for it”.

Advocating for “international level training” for the teachers, he also suggested that they should be deeply aware of innovative practices across the world.

Apart from training, he also emphasized on research so that new techniques of teaching learning can be understood and implemented at the school level.

He advocated teacher training model of Singapore and advised that the approach of International Baccalaureate (IB) board be referred for exam reforms.

UNI PY SB 1442

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