Daily Archives: August 12, 2015

Reading Habit is Dead, Long Live the Reading Habit

Reading Habit is Dead, Long Live the Reading Habit

We often hear about the death of the reading habit among students. You’d think that even seventy years ago, students would have loved to spend their time reading books because they were luckily spared from the common distractions of our day and age: the internet, television and video games. Right? Wrong.

Celebrated author Ruskin Bond was a student in 1950, and he says that reading, even back then, was cherished by only a few students. He was more specific: out of 35 students in a class, around 2-3 actually liked reading books.

If the reading habit is always skating on thin ice, then why should the current generation of students be nagged for not reading enough books? Why is reading so important?

Studies show that early reading can have a major impact on a child's reading and writing abilities, comprehension, vocabulary and self-confidence. It also provides them with a better understanding of other cultures, increases social participation and enables a greater insight into human nature and decision-making.

The International Reading Association (IRA) gives us, a rather prophetic quote:

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Learning Disability

2.84 lakh children of age 6-14 years with learning disabilities are enrolled as per Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) 2013-14. These constitute 0.14% of the total enrolment at the elementary level.

Under SSA, regular parental counselling programmes are conducted for parents of children with special needs (CWSNs) including those of learning disabilities. Against the target of training of 3.56 lakh parents of CWSN in 2014-15, 4.96 lakh parents have been given training. Besides, the resource persons engaged at the Block Resource Centres (BRC) exclusively for CWSNs under SSA also conduct home visits to counsel parents. States like Kerala and Odisha do exclusive counselling programmes for parents of CWSNs.

Under SSA, 20910 resource persons have specifically been engaged for children with special needs. These resource persons are technically qualified to teach CWSNs. They provide remedial education to children with specific learning disability.

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College Development Scheme

The UGC has provided grants under its College Development Scheme, during 2013-14, to 4071 colleges declared eligible, under Section 12B of the UGC, Act, 1956, to receive grants. The UGC has reported that it does not provide development grants to any self financing, purely private funded colleges. The UGC provided grants to self-financing colleges only under its student and teacher centric schemes; these colleges are not eligible to receive development grants from the UGC.

As per the University Grants Commission (UGC) (Mandatory Assessment and Accreditation of Higher Educational Institutions) Regulations, 2012, notified on 19th January, 2013 it is mandatory for each College to get accredited by an Accreditation Agency after passing out of two batches or six years, whichever is earlier, in accordance with the norms and methodology prescribed by such agency or the Commission, as the case may be. Further as per these Regulations, every College, which has completed six years of existence or two batches having passed out, whichever is earlier, has to apply within six months from the date of coming into force of these Regulations, to the Accreditation Agency, for accreditation. The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has notified similar regulations on 29th January, 2014.

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