Friday, February 7, 2014

Not to fail RTE clause hits learning standards

Not to fail RTE clause hits learning standards

Navrajdeep Singh  Patiala, February 05, 2014
First Published: 19:49 IST(5/2/2014) | Last Updated: 17:15 IST(6/2/2014)
The decreasing level of learning among children of elementary classes in rural areas schools has raised serious questions over quality of education in these schools. But education policies implemented by different governments from time to time have also hampered academic atmosphere.

Over the course of time, from clause like not to fail any student till class 8 under right to education Act to the failure of the state government in providing better infrastructure, have proved to be as anti- students,thus affecting results and education level in the schools.
As per available information, there are around 133 elementary schools from class 1 to 8 in Patiala district, while around 50,000 of students are presently enrolled with different schools.
However, when it comes to teachers, around 2300 teachers have been assigned task to teach such huge number of students.
As per prescribed under the RTE act, teacher-student ratio is 1:30 for primary and 1:35 for middle schools.
To find reasons behind lowering learning levels, Hindustan Times talked to several teachers.
Speaking over the RTE guideline not to fail students till class 8, Jagjit Singh, a government school teacher in primary school at village Mandaur said  such guidelines have lowered academic culture in primary and elementary schools across the state as students bothered least to take their studies seriously.
"The students have become more indisciplined and careless towards their studies that directly affect their academic skills. Taking wrong benefit of the guidelines that teachers are not going to fail them, students did not even bother to study during examination", he said.
"You have no choice but to promote students to next class even if he or she has secured zero", he said.
Another government teacher Hardeep Singh said another guideline under the RTE act not to cut names of students from school rolls for their indisciplined acts on the school premises are raising problems for teachers.They find it difficult to maintain discipline in the schools.
"Such guidelines are neither teacher-friendly nor beneficial for students. These make students disobedient towards instructions of teachers", he said.
Even the state government has proposed amendments in especially such particular guidelines to centre government but the centre government authorities have failed to take recommendations into consideration.
The centre government had also constituted special committee in which Punjab education minister Sikander Singh Maluka was also a member representing Punjab state.
The committee proposed immediate amendments but the centre government has been sitting on the report since its submission since November last year.
Meanwhile, the shortage of basic infrastructure has also come acted as hindrance. As per available information, out of 470 government primary schools directly under education department, 155 schools do not have any furniture for the students.

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