Textbooks and supporting literature which is provided free to students of Delhi government schools have several errors that render them almost unreadable.
The Delhi government provides free textbooks to students between Nursery to Class 8. From Classes 9-12, the government gives money to buy textbook and provides supporting texts.
The Delhi Bureau of Text Books prints these books and they are distributed by the Directorate of Education (DOE).
Books which have been provided this academic session have several printing errors, including one in which the map of India has been published upside down.
The discrepancies were pointed out by students and parents at a community meeting organised by Campaign for Change, an NGO.
“Illustrations, pictures and graphics are meant to make learning easy. But, the ones given in these books make it all the more difficult,” said Rajiv Kumar, of Campaign for Change.
“How can we talk about quality education when the reading material we provide to the students is of poor quality,” he said.
While many books had printing errors, some had missing or blank pages and unrecognizable pictures. Some students said that books provided in the last session too had similar issues.
The Class 8 Science book has a chapter on force and pressure. There is printed text on page 145, but pages 146 and 147 are blank. In the same lesson, pages are blank beyond 150. HT spoke to students in government schools across the north and northeast districts, who said all their books are full of errors.
“I study in Class 7 and get my books in July instead of April,” said Sohail, a Class 8 student of a government school in northeast Delhi.
In the supporting text for political science for Class 11, the students are given questions based on a photo. It claims to depict two politicians. However, the picture looks more like a caricatures.
Director, DOE, Saumya Gupta said the government has made testing norms for textbooks more stringent. “Now, the penalty for poor printing has been increased by at least 8-10 times. The sample for random checks has been decreased. We have made penalty for delivering books late tougher,” said Gupta.