As NAS reveals 42% teachers have not discussed NEP in India, educators highlight problems

Abhishek NairUpdated: Friday, May 27, 2022, 10:21 AM IST
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Pic for representation | PTI

National Achievement Survey (NAS) 2021, which was released on Wednesday, gave unique insights into how students, teachers, and schools feel about various aspects concerning education in India.

The sampled survey threw up an interesting finding on NEP. It being that only 58% of teachers have participated in discussions on National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.

“It often gets hard for teachers to understand the concepts in NEP 2020. We work with many teachers in developing the syllabus and content in textbooks and other mediums, and we have seen teachers face many difficulties in fully grasping what they are supposed to teach,” said Priya Lagvankar, who is a teacher and works with schools in developing a syllabus for primary and secondary students.

While NEP is an attractive policy for teachers, some feel that the approach was not adequate during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“During the pandemic, there was a lot of uncertainty with the reopening of schools so we primarily focused on completing the syllabus, and just finishing the academic year. Therefore we haven’t had any discussions on NEP as teachers, formally or informally nor has it been encouraged. Amid the hassle that schools had to face during the pandemic, it is out of the question that the specifics of NEP would have been discussed,” said Joseph Dsouza, an English teacher in Thane who added that dissemination of information is key when it comes to making teachers understand NEP.

“Workshops, training, etc, will help teachers participate in discussions about NEP. The last time a policy like this was released was in 1986 and it’s high time we see the Education Ministry, and state governments go all out in making sure it does not fail,” added Dsouza who lauded the efforts initiated by Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation in 2010, as mandated by the Right To Education Act, which he says was explained adequately to teachers and principals alike.

Though heads of schools agree with the participation problem that persists with NEP, they believe the issue is more complex.

“So far only school administrators and heads have received proper knowhow on what NEP entails and what it aims to do, teachers still need and deserve more sessions on how to go about implementing the policy from their position. It is important that we are also called in as stakeholders when discussions about such monumental policies are taking place otherwise the parties who are involved in bringing the same into fruition will take it casually,” said Jyoti Nambiar, a headmistress in Santacruz’s Malti Jayant Dalal who added that parents who are often knowledgeable can also be a part of such discussions on NEP and many other educational policies that concerns their children.

NAS 2021's profile of sampled teachers at the national level | National Achievement Survey 2021

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