Education System in India


Education System In India - An Introduction

The history of education in India has a rich heritage since times immemorial. Sages in India ran personal boarding schools popularly known as “Gurukul” where children received education and also helped in the daily domestic chores of their teachers. Introduction of modern day education in India by declaring English as the official language was pioneered by Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay in 1833. The British colonial rulers are the true proponents of modern day education in India. Thereafter various universities were established in Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai along with government and non government colleges all over the country and many western Christian missions also contributed by establishing private schools for imparting elementary education.

The vision and reach of education system in India has still not been fulfilled and has a long way to go. The literacy rate per census 2011 is 74.04% against the world average of 84%. India has the largest illiterate population of the world. It is believed by a study in 1990 that at the then prevalent literacy growth rate, India would accomplish universal literacy by 2060. The education system In India has a horrendous task to accomplish for the attainment of complete literacy in the shortest possible time for becoming an admirable global brain power.

Education System in India - Policies

The policies and programmes to be implemented by the schools at the national level are decided by the Government of India, though the states have a lot of freedom in implementing them. The national organisation for framing the policies, programmes and the national curriculum framework is the National Council of Education Research and Training. The State Council of Education Research and Training are the state level bodies that propose the curricula, pedagogical schemes, educational strategies and evaluation methodologies to the education departments of their respective states. The National Policy on Education, 1986 and The Programme of Action, 1992 accorded free and compulsory education for all children below 14 years of age. Though the government is committed to earmark 6% of its GDP on education, it current allocation remains 3.8%.

Education System In India - School Education

Schooling in India has a four tier strata lower primary which includes children of the age bracket 6-10 years, upper primary 11-12 years, high 13-15 years, and higher secondary 17- 18 years. Lower primary has five standards, upper primary has two, high school has three and higher secondary has two. A common curriculum pattern is followed till the end of high school except for the mother tongue which varies from state to state. Higher secondary level initiates some basic and broad level of specialisation. Nationwide students have to learn three languages – English, Hindi and their mother language.

On the national level there are two exam conducting institutions namely The Central Board of Secondary Education and The Indian Certificate of Secondary Education. Each and every state government has their own education board which conducts exams for schools located in the state which are funded by it either wholly or partially.

Education System in India - Future

Education system in India has still a lot to grow. Merely increasing literacy rate is no solution to the problem. The need of the hour is to create a knowledge nation which can be accomplished by:-

  • Imparting skill based instead of rote education.
  • Deploying quality teachers.
  • Introducing research, innovation, creativity and original thinking.
  • Inducing technology infrastructure for education.
  • Redefining the purpose of education – creating more scientists and fewer clerks.
  • Bringing class and rooting out mediocrity from the system.
  • Reducing interference and deregulating education.

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