Students in India will get updated textbooks on Pluto and its latest demotion from the solar system, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) said on Friday.
"After the recent development we have to update the textbooks on the exclusion of Pluto from the solar system, but only after due consultation with our advisory committee," Professor and Head of Department, science, NCERT Hukum Singh said.
Pluto, long considered the ninth planet of the solar system, was on Thursday labelled a "dwarf planet" and not a planet of the solar system by scientists at the International Astronomical Union at Prague. Now students in India too will have to be informed that the solar system has eight planets, and not nine as always taught.
"The advisory committee will debate the issue and consult other boards like Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and ICSE (Council for Indian School Certificate Examination) boards before taking the final decision," Singh said.
NCERT will advise the boards to issue a circular to schools to inform students about the latest development after the advisory committee meeting, likely to take place in the next two weeks, he said.
NCERT had released its new books based on suggestions of the National Curriculum Framework for classes 1,3, 6, 9 and 11 in April.
"The first phase of books was released in April. Books from Class 3 onwards need to be updated after Pluto's demotion. And we will ensure that the second phase of books for the rest of the classes have the updated information," he said.
However, he did not give a time frame to update the information.
Meanwhile, some schools in the Capital have already started informing their students about Pluto and its latest position.
"We have not received any instruction from either CBSE or NCERT but we have started informing our students about Pluto. We have pasted newspaper clips on it in our library for general awareness," said Anita Paul, vice principal of Apeejay School, Saket.
The school's physics teachers have been instructed to inform and educate students till the textbooks are rectified.
"We will not consider Pluto as a topic for examinations while preparing the question papers for all classes," Paul added.