State has 1987 Govt schools with 1:6 teacher-student ratio
Kohima, September 28: The new National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 will be implemented in a gradual manner in Nagaland, said Principal Director of School Education Department, Shanavas C, IAS.
Speaking at a webinar on ‘Impact of New Education Policy on Nagaland’ organized by the Kohima branch of Press Information Bureau (PIB) and Field Outreach Bureau, Shanavas said “Nagaland is trying to implement the NEP but it cannot be done overnight due to the problem of connectivity”.
The Principal Director said that measures will gear up once the National Curriculum Framework is brought out by the National Centre of Education, Research and Training and corroborated by SCERT Nagaland.
The new National Education Policy will take Nagaland on the fast track of progress because it will force a revamp of the education infrastructure in a very comprehensive manner, he said.
Nagaland has 1987 government schools from primary to secondary level, while the teacher-student ratio is 1:6, which is much higher than the National ratio of 1:16, he said.
Nonetheless, he lamented that despite the high teacher-student ratio and the huge number of Government schools, most teachers in the State do not stay at the place of posting while around 30-40 schools have nil enrollment.
Also maintaining that the new policy has stressed on the continuous professional development of teachers to help students improve their learning capability, Shanavas said that the state despite the lack of facilities for such professional development trainings, has been conducting trainings regularly.
He, however, lamented that the State is faced with the problem of teachers engaging proxy teachers. “Regular teachers keep proxy teachers in schools but they come to attend the professional development trainings, and the actual training does not serve the actual purpose in the field,” he remarked, while affirming that the department will be extra cautious in such matters.
He said that in consonance with the new NEP the department has started the online portal for transfer of teachers and also would soon come out with the Standards for Opening of government school.
On the medium of instruction, which the new policy has put as mother tongue, he said “with Nagaland having at least 16 tribes with different languages, the medium of instruction would continue to remain English while one mother tongue subject of the preferred tribe would be introduced in the respective jurisdiction.
Maintaining that the new NEP would provide the correct time to rectify the wrongs in the State School Education Department, he said the state government is working on improving the issues so that the new NEP can be implemented without any hindrance.
Shanavas said that under the new NEP there will be an integration of Anganwadis with early learning and an extension of mid-day meal to higher classes. A child is now going to start a formal system of education from the age of 3 and this is going to help the rural children, who used to start proper education at a much later age, he said.
The major challenge for Nagaland is to integrate Anganwadis with school education and substantially enhance teaching skills at the ground level, he said.
Shanavas said that the state government will also take the help of NGOs in augmenting the teaching quality through teachers’ training and developing teaching literature in local languages.
Meanwhile, emphasizing on the need for a State Task Force on School Education with the political will of the government, the Principal Director sought the support of all the stakeholders towards the successful implementation of the new education policy in the State.
In his address, Director PIB Imphal under Manipur State, Abhishek Dayal said that New Education policy will greatly empower and benefit the students of the entire North East region and Nagaland in particular, because of the national standardization, shift from rote learning to true understanding of subjects, creating better infrastructure and greater stress on building the capacity of teachers.
NEP comes at a time when digital learning is becoming more and more important and national and international standards are becoming uniform, he said.
It is imperative that the state government and the implementing agencies hand hold the stakeholders for smooth transition, said Dayal.
Assistant Director, PIB Kohima K. Sonikumar Singh informed that PIB is hosting a series of webinars on NEP with a view to help better understanding of the policy better. (Page News Service)