HRD ministry to set quality standards for schools

HRD ministry to set quality standards for schools

Schools that are managed or aided by the government will soon be made more accountable with the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry setting benchmarks to assess the quality of education they are providing to students.

The nationwide exercise, planned to be carried out in coordination with the respective state governments and other stakeholders, will also assess the performance of schools on various other indicators like pedagogy and governance.

The National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA) will steer the assessment of schools’ performance programme.

“We will set standards for (assessment of) schools’ performance,” Department of School Education and Literacy Secretary R Bhattacharya said after HRD Minister MM Pallam Raju launched a leadership development scheme for school principals and head teachers here on Wednesday.

The move comes following concerns over the lack of quality of education being provided by schools across the country. Notwithstanding, a significant rise in the percentage of enrolment of children and decline in drop out rates since implementation of the Right to Education Act, various reports have highlighted urgent need to bring measures to improve the quality of school education.

“We hope, the assessment of the performance of schools will motivate teachers and principals to strive for excellence,” a HRD Ministry official said.

The official, however, replied in negative when asked if the teachers or principals of low performing schools could be taken to task for not meeting the benchmarks.The school leadership development programme, to be implemented by the NUEPA in coordination with the state governments and other agencies, will cover 1.5 million government run and aided schools across of the country.

The beneficiaries of the programme will be given option to take up courses ranging from six months to one year. The NUEPA will set up regional centres to provide training to school principal and head teachers under the scheme. While preparing the training modules, the NUEPA has adopted some of the best international practices in the world. 

Under the scheme, principals and head teachers will be trained on various aspects ranging from governance and pedagogy to enable them improve the performance of their schools.

“The focus of the programme is to give a thrust on quality of education in schools,” Raju said, hoping the school leadership development scheme will play a key role in transforming schools and their governance.

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