Prime Minister Narendra Modi August 7 said the National Education Policy 2020 will lay the foundation of 21st century India. "This is a change which the entire country has been awaiting for years," said PM Modi speaking at an education conclave by UGC.
PM Modi added that he is fully committed as far as the political will for NEP 2020 implementation is concerned.
"NEP 2020 has brought in an environment of healthy debate in the country with people reviewing its benefits. Everyone agrees that there is no bias in NEP 2020," he added.
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Modi explained that the key of NEP 2020 is implementation.
"Looking at this; wherever improvement is required, we will do it," he said.
The Union Cabinet headed by PM Modi on July 29 gave its nod to the National Education Policy. Consequently, the Human Resource Development Ministry has been renamed as the Ministry of Education.
The National Education Policy 2020 proposes far-reaching changes in the system of education not only in India. It also wants a self-sufficient domestic ranking system for Indian educational institutes.
Under the new system, flexibility will be given to students both in choosing the subjects for education as well as in the entry and exit in college degree programmes. Emphasis will also be given on local languages as medium of instruction in schools.
Also Read: All your questions about NEP 2020 answered
Talking about the implementation of NEP 2020, PM Modi said that all stakeholders like schools, colleges, regulators, students and teachers would have to play an equally crucial role.
Mother tongue as medium of instruction
The NEP 2020 has said that wherever possible, the medium of instruction should be the mother tongue or regional/local language till the fifth grade and preferably till eighth grade.
"There is evidence to show that whenever a child is taught in the same language as their mother tongue, then the pace of learning is higher. Hence, NEP has said that wherever possible, students must be taught all subjects in the mother tongue," said PM Modi.
The prime minister added that while India needs to make its students into global citizens, it is also essential to stay connected to the roots.
PM Modi explained that NEP 2020 has not only both our rich ancient roots as well as modernity through its 'Ateet se Adhunik' (ancient to modernity) approach.
Flexible entry/exit benefit to students
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in his address that students should have the flexibility to enter educational programmes depending on their passion and circumstances.
NEP 2020 allows students an opportunity to enter and exit higher education programmes and also helps maintain an academic bank of credit so that students are benefited.
"A student can follow his/her passion and join a course. If they don’t like it or are forced to work due to financial conditions, they can drop out. The academic credit bank will help these students to join back," he added.
The academic credit bank will store all the education credentials of the students till the time they exit a programme. If a student decides to join back, he/she would not have to enroll into the course from the beginning and can start off from the point they dropped out by accessing the credits from the digital locker.
"We are moving into an era where one individual will not stick to a single profession throughout his/her life. So there is a need to constantly re-skill and up-skill which is being aided by NEP," said PM Modi.
Across the education system, the prime minister said that the focus will be on 'inquiry-based, discussion-based and analysis-based' techniques. He said that this was the idea to cut down the lengthy syllabus in school curriculum under NEP.
"Our education system had so far shown students what to think. The new system under NEP will show how to think," he said.
Focus on dignity of labour
PM Modi said that it is crucial that the dignity of labour is maintained across the country.
He expressed disappointment about people doing certain jobs being treated differently than the other.
"The only reason there is no proper dignity of labour in the country is because the education system is disconnected from this segment. Under NEP, students can meet these individuals, be it a farmer or a rural worker and understand the contribution made by such workers to the country," said PM Modi.
Under NEP 2020, students will have to study vocational education from the sixth grade. Here, school children will be made to visit the local artisan, farmer, potter, carpenter among others to find out about the skills that go into these professions.
Recognition of teachers
PM Modi quoted former president late APJ Abdul Kalam who had said that the purpose of education is to make good human beings and that enlightened human beings can be created by teachers.
NEP 2020 has talked about up-skilling teachers and having a career development for these professionals.
The prime minister said that the dignity of teachers has also been kept into mind while framing the NEP 2020.