The Ministry of HRD has taken a number of initiatives including various Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS) to enhance quality of education. The details are as under: –
The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) conducts detailed periodic national surveys on learning achievement levels of children in classes – III, V and VIII. Three rounds of these National Learners’ Achievement Surveys have been completed by the NCERT over the period from 2002-03 to 2012-2013, which have revealed improvements in the overall learning levels of students.
Under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), the State Governments and UT Administrations are supported on interventions to improve the quality of elementary education, including interalia, programmes to improve foundational learning levels in language and mathematics in early primary grades, strengthening science and mathematics teaching-learning at upper primary level and implementation of a system of continuous and comprehensive evaluation system with regular state level learning assessment studies, as well.
With regard to Secondary Schools (IX-X) under Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) scheme, one of the objectives is to improve quality while providing access to secondary schools at the same time. Financial support is given to states under RMSA for additional class rooms, science, maths & computer laboratories, libraries, art and crafts room, toilet blocks, drinking water provisions and residential hostels for teachers in remote areas.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has taken various measures for educational reforms, such as the introduction of a semester system, the regular updating of Curricula and Choice Based Credit Systems (CBSC), etc. The UGC has also issued Regulations on “Minimum Qualifications for Appointment of Teachers and other Academic Staff in Universities and Colleges and Measures for the Maintenance of Standards in Higher Education, 2010” for improving the standard of teaching in Indian Universities. The UGC has also issued the Mandatory Assessment and Accreditation of Higher Educational Institutions Regulations, 2012 whereby all eligible higher Educational institutions are required to get themselves accredited.
The UGC also implements various schemes aimed at improving the quality of higher education, such as Universities with Potential for Excellence (UPE), Colleges with Potential for Excellence (CPE), Special Assistance Programme (SAP), Assistance for Strengthening of Infrastructure for Science and Technology (ASIST), “Assistance for Strengthening of Infrastructure for Humanities and Social Sciences” (ASIHSS), Basic Scientific Research (BSR) etc.
Apart from strengthening the on-going schemes of the Ministry, the following new initiatives have been included in the Budget 2014-15: –
- Setting up of 5 IITs and 5 IIMs
- Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya National Mission on Teachers’ and Teaching.
- Setting up of Virtual Classrooms and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)
- Creation of National e-library.
- Establishing Lok Nayak Jayaprakash National Centre for excellence in humanities in Madhya Pradesh.
- Provision for toilets and drinking water in all the girls’ schools.
- Schools Assessment Program.
- Simplification of norms for education.
This information was given by Minister of State in the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Prof. (Dr.) Ram Shankar Katheria in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question.