Mixed response to move for limiting no-detention to class V

Mixed response to move for limiting no-detention to class V

Mixed response to move for limiting  no-detention to class V
The draft of the new education policy released by the Ministry of Human Resources Development last month has hinted at limiting the no-detention policy in schools to class 5, from class 8.

The implications of such a measure in Karnataka are bound to be far-reaching as it has ardently supported the no-detention policy ensured by the provisions of the RTE Act.

Ajay Seth, principal secretary, Department of Primary and Secondary Education, has said that the new measure, once implemented, may not be very different from the previous one, in that it talks about the need for “remedial instruction” for weak students.

“A child who is weak in class should be identified and brought on a par with others. The recommendations in the draft have their own aims. However, a right approach will make sure that quality education remains available,” he said.

Emphasis on quality
Seth said that instead of concentrating on limiting the no-detention policy, emphasis should be on the quality of education.

The draft says that the present provisions of no-detention policy will be amended, as it has seriously affected the academic performance of students.

This is a sentiment that has been commonly echoed by many. Among them is a primary school teacher from a government school in Koppal.

“Students do not concentrate on their studies as they know they will pass. We see the results after class 8. Many of my own students are not able to even read properly. It is a pathetic condition. Teachers, instead of being able to concentrate on teaching, are given responsibilities like mid-day meals and what not,” he said.

The new recommendations have, however, rattled supporters of the present policy. V P Niranjan Aradhya, Fellow at the Centre for Child and the Law, National Law School of India University, is of the opinion that the entire debate has shifted from quality of education to ability of the students.

“Why are children not learning and performing well? There are numerous problems, lack of good teachers and infrastructure to name a few. One cannot make students the scapegoat for such systemic failures,” he said.

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