‘Every student will gain basic ability to read by Nov 14’
Announcing the roadmap here, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the plan was being rolled out as students’ inability to read was the single biggest challenge towards reversing the dismal state of the education sector.
“By November 14, the reading ability of every child will be brought to at least the basic level. Our internal survey as well as reports produced by the likes of ASER has over the years found that a large number of children cannot even read,” Sisodia said.
A recent assessment of the learning skills of children studying in 1,011 Delhi government schools revealed that 74 per cent of them cannot read a paragraph from their own Hindi textbook while 46 per cent cannot read a simple story of class II competency.
Sisodia said there will be another round of assessment between November 15-20 to check the level of competency achieved by the students and November 21 onwards, the public in general including parents, journalists and activists will be allowed to make rounds of the schools.
The government, as part of its Chunauti 2018 project, also plans to frame different sets of question papers for children studying in class VI, VII and VIII based on their learning abilities.
“The question papers may differ in terms of difficulty but it will be based on the same syllabus. This won’t be a problem as in any case students are not detained till class VIII,” a government official said.
The government has also set aside incentives in the form of awards to best-performing teachers, principals and schools under the latest initiative.
Sisodia said in the absence of basic ability to read, focusing on things like framing syllabi would be a pointless exercise.
“Government schools have been deliberately neglected over the years. But we are trying to reverse the situation. When people are busy talking about the rights of the LG, our concern is the rights of these children,” Sisodia said.
Under Chunauti 2018 scheme, a total of 2,01,997 students studying in government schools will be mapped and the weakest students will be given “special focus” to enhance learning levels from classes VI to IX.
Class VI is the beginning level at the Delhi government schools where the majority of students come from around 1,860 schools run by the civic bodies.
Meanwhile, Sisodia also urged for a nationwide public debate on whether country should be run by professionals or bureaucrats. He slammed the national educational system and said: “Our country doesn’t have Education Ministry, we prefered the Human Resources Development.”
Sisodia was addressing an organised Seminar on Indian Philosophical Foundation For Modern Education.