AP government bets on NEP to transform school education in the state – Times of India

Amravati: The Andhra Pradesh government is betting on the National Education Policy-2020 to transform school education, especially through comprehensive educational and administrative reforms, in the key light of improving education outcomes.

Various studies in recent years have uncovered “poor reading and comprehension skills” among students while the government has identified many “key concerns” that have put the school education system in a very good position.

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The rising dropout rate, especially in higher secondary education (grades 9 and 10), is 14.8 percent, which is a cause for concern even after the government has implemented what it calls “impeccable revolutionary reforms.” According to the Government of India, the drop-out rate at upper-primary level (Class 6-8) is only 0.3 percent.

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The Annual Status of Education report reveals that only 22.4 percent of 3rd graders in AP can read second-grade textbooks and subtract 38.4 percent.

The report further states that only 47.60 per cent children in 8th class can do (mathematical) division, while in 5th class the percentage is 39.3 per cent.

The Student Learning Achievement Survey-2018 noted that performance in the language of students in grades four to nine dropped from 63.50 to 49.40 percent and in mathematics from 69.55 to 39.30 percent.

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“There is a clear lack of focus on Class 1 and 2 which is creating a deficit in education. This deficit continues throughout the child’s career,” a government study noted.

“Teachers in one or two second grades are conducting classes 1 through 5 and they are competing to manage 18 subjects. As a result, inadequate attention is being paid to any one class,” the note said.

Although government schools showed a significant increase of over 6.2 lakh last year, more than 25.25 lakh children in the state are still ‘out of the system’.

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In total, more than 0% of 212 primary schools have less than 0 registered enrollment.

“Small-scale schools are scattered across the state. This saturation-thin expansion of primary schools is also wasting human resources,” said a senior official in the school education department.

He said this is one of the reasons for the poor education results in government schools.

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Inadequate focus on pre-schooling, sub-optimal use of infrastructure, lack of academic inspection and observation, and lack of parental support for learning have been identified as the main reasons for poor learning outcomes.

To put an end to this, the state government is relying on the National Education Policy-2020 to bring about a change and improve the outcome of education.

The focus areas identified by the government are upgrading school infrastructure, restructuring and relocating existing Anganwari centers and non-residential schools, and strengthening basic education.

Teachers will be redistributed to schools in accordance with the Right to Education Act to eliminate inequality and optimize human resources.

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“We know what is missing and we have identified the gaps. We now need to re-focus our focus and move towards a change of perspective. NEP-2020 has shown us the way forward,” the senior official said.

The government has now set up Satellite Foundation School (Pre-Primary 1 and 2), Foundation School (PP1 and Class 1, 2), Foundation School Plus (PP1 to Class 5), Pre-High School (Class 3) and Schools and Anganwari Centers. High School (Class 3 to 10) and High School Plus (Class 3 to 12) in line with NEP-2020.

One million teachers have already been trained to make these changes.

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“From now on, we will try to make education holistic, integrated, inclusive, enjoyable and attractive. Special focus will be on providing quality instruction by special subject teachers for students in grades 3 to 5, which was previously absent,” the education official added.

Over the next three years, the government aims to spend Rs 12,352 crore on renovating school infrastructure, developing laboratories, libraries and playgrounds.

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