The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is planning to “update” its affiliation byelaws for schools to usher in more transparency and to bring them effectively in tune with legislations like Right to Education Act and Persons with Disabilities Act.
CBSE chairperson RK Chaturvedi told reporters in New Delhi that there is a need to update the existing norms and bring them “in tune” with the existing laws.
“We are planning to look at the byelaws and make them more compatible with the existing legislations. The government will also bring in the New Education Policy in the coming days. We have to ensure that our norms are in consonance with the overall policy,” Chaturvedi said at the sidelines of CBSE conference on “Examination reform for Inclusive Education.”
He said the RTE Act allows children with special needs to pursue mainstream education, but most of them are forced to go to special schools. “Inclusion”, Chaturvedi emphasised, rejects the use of special schools or classrooms to segregate the differently abled children from other students.
“Generally, the schools use the inclusion model for selected students with mild to moderate special needs. Fully inclusive schools do not separate general education and special education curriculum, instead, education curriculum is restructured in such a way that all students learn,” he said.
Chaturvedi also said that section 26 of ‘The persons with Disabilities Act, 1995’ mandates the provision of free and compulsory education to be offered to all children with disabilities up to minimum age of 18 years.
He also said that the affiliation bye-laws of the Board insists on making the school barrier-free, provisioning for ramps, lifts, etc and directs that every school shall promote inclusion of student with disabilities or special needs.
Officials also said that there are a issues ranging from inclusivity to complaints related to demands of capitation fees to issue related to heavy school bags and undue homework, etc which are being faced by the board.
The intention is to make the norms tighter in this regard, officials suggested. The CBSE chairman who took over recently, said that quality of education and teachers’ training are priority areas for the Board.
CBSE officials also said that while they will be recruiting teachers for Kendriya Vidyalayas and Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas this year, but they hope that in the long run this task is taken up by these organisations themselves.