November 23, 2020.
TED NewsDesk, Bengaluru: The National Education Policy 2020 (NEP 2020) came into force this year and replaced the 34-year old National Policy on Education, aiming to transform the Indian education system. It offers a comprehensive framework for elementary to higher education, including a range of transformative changes like introducing the 5+3+3+4 structure. It presents a vocational education training system at younger levels and calls out the requirements for furthering an innovative culture and a highly skilled workforce.
Dr K Kasturirangan headed the Committee for the Draft of National Education Policy 2020. He is also an eminent scientist who has led the Indian space programme under the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) for nine years.
Speaking at the Bengaluru Tech Summit 2020, he explained how this policy should bring around transformative changes in the Indian education system, keeping in mind the needs and requirements of the 21st century while maintaining roots to the Indian value system. In his keynote, he briefly outlined the foundational elements of the New Education Policy 2020, encompassing school education, higher education, professional and vocational education.
“India over the next decade will have the highest young population in the world, with more than 50 per cent of the population below the age of 35 aspiring for high-quality education. The demographic dividend has to be taken advantage of. To do so, it calls for a need to enable them to acquire new skills, one that will help them learn how to learn,” he said while also noting the changes in the knowledge landscape of India.
“The education of the future needs to be reconfigured to meet the goals of the global education development agenda- the fourth goal of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals that seek to ensure inclusion and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunity for all.”
NEP 2020, he added, offers an integrated and flexible approach to education and provides an end-to-end educational roadmap for India. He highlighted that NEP lays particular emphasis on kindling the innovative potential of each individual and gives them flexibility for students to make choices.
“As a crucial step to lead India into the fourth industrial revolution, multidisciplinary education is vital. Even engineering schools such as IITs will move towards a more holistic multidisciplinary education with more arts and humanities; while arts and humanities students will need to learn more science. And this will be compounded with an effort to include more vocational subjects and soft skills,” he noted.
The NEP offers new hope to the crumbling education system of the country. With an infrastructure that is broken and trodden down upon, rift with corruption, the new education policy gleams like a beacon of the unknown future that relies heavily on the country’s development as a global superpower in the coming years. Hopefully, NEP 2020 will gradually weed out all that is wrong with the current system of knowledge in the country and make its citizens more productive and efficient.