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Monday, Dec 13, 2010
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JAIPUR: Rajasthan is racing against time to get rid of the tag of a State with poor human development indicators. At least as far as the school education is concerned, the efforts are dedicated and results expected to be positive. Keen on implementing the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 in letter and spirit, the State is already way ahead in ensuring all children are in school and keeps track on 12 lakh children who are out of school, including drop-outs and those who never went to school.
“This figure of 12 lakh was arrived at from a comprehensive door-to-door survey done on the lines of Census,” said Veenu Gupta, Commissioner and State Project Director of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA). These names will now be put on an interactive web portal that will become functional next month with directions to the officials to enrol them into schools. The out-of-school children include 7.13 lakh girls and 4.77 lakh boys.
“Citizens and civil society groups too can give names of out-of-school children which would be verified and then added to the list. As and when these children are enrolled it will be displayed on the website. Each student will be given a registration number that will help the government to keep track on them,” Ms. Gupta explained.
The SSA is the implementing vehicle for the Right to Education Act and as part of this exercise the State government has created a resource group of experts for advising it.
No corporal punishment
Apart from banning corporal punishment and ensuring total sanitation and safe drinking water in all schools by March 2011, Rajasthan has started implementing Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) as a pilot project in 60 schools. CCE scheme refers to a school-based evaluation of students that covers all the aspects of their development, where ‘continuous' means regular assessments, frequency of unit testing, analysis of learning gaps, applying corrective measures, retesting and giving feedback to teachers and students for their self-evaluation, ‘comprehensive' on the other hand means covering both the scholastic and co-scholastic aspects of a student's growth and development. “Implementing CCE is a huge task as it involves changing the mindset of teachers,” Ms. Gupta pointed out.
There is a shortfall of 23,000 teachers that has put the teacher-student ratio at 1:40 against 1:30 envisaged under the RTE. She said the State has already done away with Class V and Class VIII Board exams as part of the CCE.CCE pilot projects have been initiated in schools in Jaipur and Alwar districts for students from Class 1 to Class IV for three years before the system is introduced in all schools. The teachers in these identified schools have been given special training for implementing CCE, Govind Singh, Assistant Director of SSA told TheHindu.
Of the 317 teachers to be trained for the purpose, 265 have already completed their training and are now in the process of introducing the new system in the schools. The training was conducted with the help of UNICEF and Bodh Shiksha Samiti. Admitting that the new system meant more work for teachers, Mamta Sharma, a trained teacher in a primary School in Malviya National Institute of Technology (MNIT) said that the system was inclusive and more relevant
. The students are judged according to the level of performance for which various innovative methods are used by teachers, thereby discouraging rote learning and fear of exams. A proper daily register of a child's performance is maintained and the parents who form part of the School Management Committee (SMC) kept updated.
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