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Common school system proposed

National Knowledge Commission proposes a new model of education from school till university level, reports Chetan Chauhan.

india Updated: Dec 27, 2006 03:16 IST

Vice-Chairperson of National Knowledge Commission Dr PM Bhargava has proposed a new model of education from school till university level, apparently in variance from what the HRD ministry has been proposing.

Advocating a common school system, Bhargava has asked the ministry to recall its order asking the states to implement the Right to Education Bill, stating that implementing the law was the Centre's 'responsibility'.

Management of all government schools should vest with the local self-government andstrict state regulation for private schools to prevent profiteering, he said, in his paper presented at a seminar organised by National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA) on Tuesday.

Bhargava also recommended one school system in the country by setting up of a national level School Regulatory Authority and winding of the Central Board of School Education and Indian School Certificate board.

On school curriculum, he said, the emphasis should be on acquiring 'knowledge' rather than 'skills' for the job market. English should be taught from class I, along with the regional language. Students should get a chance to reappear in exams, in case they fail to clear them, and should also assess performance of teachers periodically, he said.

Predicting that India will need 3,000 universities with each having not more than 10,000 students to meet the demand, Bharagava proposed to convert good private or public colleges into universities and increased private participation in higher education.

Instead, of University Grants Commission or All India Council of Technical Education, there should be an autonomous Higher Education Regulatory Authority for all, he said. The authority will give license to testing and monitoring organisations. Bharagava also said that there should be a national test as conducted by ETS of Princeton for testing students' ability before admission into an institution of higher education. The test should be conducted 4-6 times a year and students should be allowed to take the test as many times for a nominal fee. And, all universities, including private, should admit students based on the test results, he said.

Regarded as the architect of modern biology and biotechnology in India, Bhargava has asked universities to revise its research oriented programmes in a bid to retain talent.

Other well known academicians like Professor R Govinda, Professor Anil Sadgopalan, Professor HP Dikshit and Professor MS Yadav also asked the government to revise its policies to meet the goals enumerated in various education commissions.

Email Chetan Chauhan: chetan@hindustantimes.com

First Published: Dec 27, 2006 03:16 IST