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New Education Policy 2023-2024: Everything You Need To Know

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Jagpreet

29 April, 2024

New Education Policy 2023-2024: Everything You Need To Know

The “New National Education Policy (NEP)”, which was approved by the Union Cabinet, is expected to bring a flurry of reforms, ranging from school curriculum reductions to the abolition of MPhil programs.

The NEP aspires to develop an education system that directly contributes to the country’s transformation by delivering high-quality education to all citizens and developing India into a global knowledge superpower.

New System of Education 2024

The new education policy was adopted by the Modi government. The 10 + 2 structure has been fully eliminated in the new education policy. Our country’s educational curriculum has been based on 10 + 2, but it will soon be based on 5+ 3+ 3+ 4. This means that one-half is from primary to second grade, the second portion is from third to fifth grade, the third part is from sixth to eighth grade, and the last part is from ninth to 12th grade.

We’ll provide you with a quick overview of the New Education Policy 2021-2023, including the Scheme Benefits and key Features.

NEW EDUCATION POLICY 2023-2024 – Overview
Name of Scheme New Education Policy (NEP)
in Hindi Language नईशिक्षानीति
Name of Ministry Union Cabinet Minister for Human Resource Development, Government of India
HRD Minister Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank
Launched by Central Government of India
Beneficiaries Students of India
Major Benefit Provide New Reforms and Infrastructure In India
New Education Policy Launch Date 29 July 2020
NEP 2020 implementation date Implemented in the academic year 2023-2024
Scheme Objective Education System Reform
Scheme under State Government
Name of State All India
Post Category Scheme/ Yojana
Official Website  https://www.education.gov.in/

What is the New Education Policy 2024 (NEP)?

The Indian government’s New Education Policy is referred to as NEP. It was last modified in 1992 after being drafted in 1986. The Modi-led BJP government vowed in its election manifesto to create a new education policy, or NEP, to bring about changes in the education sector.

In July 2020, the Union Cabinet of India approved the New National Education Policy (NEP) with the aim to bring modern reforms in the Indian education system from the school to the college level. This policy stands on the ideology to make India a ‘global knowledge superpower.’ In addition to this, it was with the introduction of NEP in 2020 that the Ministry of Human Resource Development was renamed to the Ministry of Education.

The new National Education Policy is based on the pillars of Access, Equity, Quality, Affordability, and Accountability. It aims to make both school and college education more holistic, multidisciplinary, and flexible, which aligns with the 2020 agenda for sustainable development.

 

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The Need for a New National Education Policy (NEP)

Up until the introduction of the New National Education Policy in 2020, there were many pitfalls in the Indian education system. Memorisation was prioritised more over the understanding of concepts. In addition to this, the presence of multiple boards was a big issue. Each board had different learning methods for different skills, and then every student had to take the same standardised board exam.

Furthermore, in the past years, more emphasis was laid on learning or mastering traditional subjects and less on developing vocational skills. In the new education policy, all the pitfalls and limitations of the Indian education system are taken care of. Moreover, the policy intends to bridge the gap between vocational and formal education.

Transformation of Indian Education System Post-Independence

  • 1948 – The 1st commission, University Education Commission, was set up

  • 1952 – The Secondary Education Commission was established

  • 1964-1966 – The Indian Education Commission was introduced

  • 1968 – 1st National Education Policy came up

  • 1986 – A new policy was formulated

  • 1992 – The previous education policy was modified

  • 2005 – The 1986 education policy was again modified

  • 2020 – The new National Education Policy (NEP) was passed by the cabinet

  • 2023-2024 – The New Education Policy was implemented in this academic year

What Led to the Creation of NEP?

A panel of specialists, led by former ISRO chief K Kasturirangan, discussed the difficulties and adjustments needed in the Indian education system, which included everything from school to college to recruitment. These proposals were gathered, and the Ministry then approved them.

Salient Features of New Education Policy 2024

1. Schooling from the age of 3 years now

The New Education Policy extends compulsory schooling from the age bracket of 6-14 years to 3-18 years. The NEP includes three years of previously unrecognised pre-schooling for children aged 3-6 years in the school curriculum. The new system will include 12 years of formal education and three years of Anganwadi/pre-school education.

The 10+2 school curriculum framework will be replaced with a 5+3+3+4 curricular structure corresponding to ages 3-8, 8-11, 11-14, and 14-18 years, respectively, with an emphasis on Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE).

2. Mother tongue can be the medium of instruction

The NEP emphasises pupils’ native language as the medium of teaching while adhering to the “three-language formula” and ensuring that no language is imposed on anyone. The NEP simply suggests using the mother tongue as a medium of instruction rather than making it mandatory.

According to the policy paper, children learn and grasp non-trivial topics faster in their native language.

The home language, mother tongue, local language, or regional language will be used as the medium of instruction until at least Grade 5, but preferably until Grade 8 and beyond. Following that, wherever practicable, the home or local language will be taught as a language. “Both public and private schools will follow this,” the regulation adds.

3. NO UGC, AICTE, NCTE

The Higher Education Commission of India (HECI) will be established as a single umbrella body for all higher education in India, excluding medical and legal education. Regulation, accreditation, and academic standards will all be governed by the same set of rules for public and private higher education institutions.

In 15 years, the government will phase down college affiliation, and a stage-by-stage procedure for providing colleges with graded autonomy will be formed.

4. Science, Arts, and Commerce gets blurred

There would be no formal distinctions between arts and sciences, curricular and extra-curricular activities, or vocational and academic programs under NEP 2020. Students can choose from a variety of disciplines throughout the streams. Internships will be included in vocational education, which will begin in sixth grade.

5. FYUP Programme Returns & No More Dropouts

Under the NEP, undergraduate degrees will last three or four years, with several exit alternatives available during that time. After one year of study in a topic or field, including vocational and professional fields, colleges will be required to award a certificate, a diploma following two years of study, or a Bachelor’s degree after a three-year program.

The government will also create an Academic Bank of Credit to store academic credits earned at various HEIs digitally so that they can be transferred and counted toward a final degree.

Finally, based on the foregoing points, we can conclude that this policy implements much-needed adjustments. There was no uniform system in place, which has now been eliminated. It has more transparency and a single national agency in charge of overseeing the whole education system in the country.

6. Common Access at all School-level Education

NEP 2020 focuses on bringing universal access to school education to ensure the holistic development of students right from the beginning. According to this policy, students’ progress and their learning capacity will be tracked timely. Students will be given access to different learning modes, like formal and informal teaching methods. In addition to this, the policy states that vocational education courses are to be included in the curriculum from pre-school to 12th standard. The policy is not just limited to knowledge or skills; it also emphasises the inclusion of trained counsellors and social workers in the schooling system.

7. Foundational Literacy and Numeracy (FLN) to start from grade 3

FLN is a broad concept that refers to a child’s capability to read basic texts and solve basic numerical problems such as addition and subtraction. It is considered an urgent and vital prerequisite to learning. Keeping this in mind, the NEP has directed the states to prepare a plan on how to implement and achieve this in the curriculum for all primary school students by 2025.

8. Project-based Learning in the School Curriculum

The policy states that the school curriculum and pedagogy should aim for the holistic development of students by designing the coursework that would equip them with 21st-century skills. Students will have to study a reduced course content, which will emphasise experiential learning and critical thinking and give students the choice of subjects they wish to study. Moreover, vocational education will be made available in class 6th-8th, along with internship opportunities.

9. Efforts to Increase the Graduate Enrollment Ratio

In the past years, very few students opted for higher education. So in view of this concern, the policy aims to incorporate a maximum number of students in higher education, including vocational education. The graduate enrolment ratio is expected to increase up to 50% by 2035 from 26.3% in 2018.  Also, with the multiple exit options in higher education, it is expected that the student dropout rate will reduce.

10. Bringing Online and Distance Education at Par with Regular Courses

The government has already taken initiatives to bring the standards of distance learning programmes at par with regular courses. Measures like online courses, digital repositories, funding for improved student services and research, and credit-based recognition of MOOCs, among others are to be taken.

11. Technological Innovation in Education as the Base of NEP

National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), an autonomous body, will be started to offer a free exchange of ideas related to the usage of technology in enhancing the academic experience. This integration of technology is expected to improve the classroom processes, contribute to teacher professional development, and streamline the management of education planning.

12. Internationalisation of Education

An important aspect of the NEP 2020 is that it promotes the internationalisation of education by encouraging institutions to forge global collaborations with universities and research institutes. This will not be limited to students, faculty exchange programmes will also be encouraged. Meanwhile, the policy aims to allow top world universities to open their campuses in India.

13. Increase in Public Investment in Education

In line with the objective of the New Education Policy, the Centre and State governments will be working in collaboration to increase investment in education. The collaboration of both houses is expected to reach 6% of GDP in regard to the education sector as soon as possible in order to improve the educational infrastructure.

Confused About the 5+3+3+4 Structure of NEP?

It is the refurbished structure of the educational framework which was introduced in the New Education Policy 2024. It categorises learning into four stages, explained below:

  • Foundational Stage: It consists of the initial years of a child’s education i.e. till 5 years. The first three years of primary education are based on interactive learning through activities and playful games. This is followed by grades 1 and 2 where the child will gain basic literacy and numbers.
  • Preparatory Stage: It spans for three years from class 3rd to 5th. A multi-faceted approach is to be adopted for a comprehensive learning experience at this stage. The curriculum emphasises on understanding and the application of concepts instead of rote memorisation.
  • Middle Stage: The stage between classes 6th to 8th is the middle stage and it takes your child deeper into the subject matter. It is the first time that students are introduced to project-based learning and they learn about the subjects in detail.
  • Secondary Stage: It is the final segment of school education which includes grade 9 to 12, also known as higher secondary education. Students get the chance to choose the subjects of their choice and prepare them for future career paths. The child will learn real-world skills and competencies.

Abiding Principles of New Education Policy 2024

The primary goal of the New Education Policy is to assess the standard of education and upgrade its mark each year to match the global level. The objective is to make India a leader in a knowledge-based industry through the universalisation of education. Underlined are the principles of NEP:

  • Determine each child’s potential and focus on it

  • Enhance foundation literacy and numeracy knowledge among children at an early stage

  • Promote and offer flexible learning methods

  • Invest in public education

  • Upgrade the quality of education at all levels

  • Bring children closer to Indian culture

  • Invest in research

  • Popularise the use of technology and emphasis on digital literacy

  • Teach different Indian/foreign languages

  • Focus on developing the child’s creativity and logical thinking

  • Make education policy more transparent

Implementation Phase of the New Education Policy in 2023?

Since its introduction in 2020, many Indian educational institutions have adopted the pattern of the new National Education Policy. After three years of adoption, many academicians from top Indian institutions, including IITs, NITs, and IISERs, have reviewed the implementation of the policy. They have shared the roadmap of the changes and upgrades they have made in the academic system.

As reported by the Deccan Chronicle, the Director of IIT Hyderabad, Prof. B.S. Murthy shared that the students were given a semester break with 6 credits to pursue innovative ventures. Their institution intended to promote entrepreneurship by encouraging students to pursue BUILD (Bold & Unique Ideas Leading Development) projects. On the other hand, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Hyderabad, Prof. B. Jagdeeshwar Rao, said that NEP measures have enabled students to pursue two programmes simultaneously.

Among these is Panjab University which implemented the New Educational Policy 2023 in a phased manner in the years 2023 – 2024. The suggestions in regulations and syllabi for the previous session were already approved and the university will continue to adopt the new measures.

The adoption of an open curriculum with transdisciplinary course patterns, including flexibility in electives, has led to the enhancement of skill development and community-oriented projects. This is what Prof. Satyanarayana, IIT – Tirupati, said in a press conference. According to him, this will play a crucial role in nation-building. Prof. Rajesh Viswanathan of the reputed Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Tirupati informed that their institution had made provisions for multiple-exit options in the BS-MS programme. This will add a holistic multidisciplinary approach to the education system, which earlier was rigid.

Challenges of NEP 2024

The framework designed by NEP will bring a revolutionary change in the entire higher education ecosystem of India, but it has a few limitations, as studied by a few researchers. These are:

  • As the policy aims to double the gross enrollment ratio by 2035, this requires the creation of a new university every week for the next 15 years, which is a huge challenge.

  • To deliver the upgraded curriculum effectively, India needs a sizable pool of competent teachers who are familiar with the new pedagogical approach.

  • Adequate funding and resources are required for proper implementation.

  • As teachers generally share a disciplinary anchoring culture, it is difficult to have educators with exceptional skills who are experts in one area and lean in other subjects as well.

  • NEPs multiple entry and exit options may face challenges in India because of the large student population. It could lead to a high annual intake in higher education. It can become difficult for universities to predict how many students would join and exit.

Bottom Line

At this point, India’s education system is at a critical juncture, with the path not completely clear. The Indian education system must meet the needs of the progressive society with a population of over 1.4 billion. In the past years, India has surely made several changes in its academic structure; some challenges are yet to pass.

The new National Educational Policy offers a comprehensive strategy to enhance the quality of education and bridge the gap in socioeconomic disparities in Indian society. Its success calls for a robust collaboration between private and government entities. Therefore, if properly executed, NEP 2020 has the potential to shape India’s education system.

FAQs:

Q1 When will the new education policy be implemented?

The New Education Policy (NEP) came into existence in 2020 and was implemented in the 2023-2024 academic year. It included syllabus updates and restructuring of the grade system. It focuses on covering the pitfalls of the Indian educational system, removing the concept of rote learning. Moreover, it addressed the issue of multiple boards which existed in the old system.

Q2. Is the 10th board removed as per the new education policy?

As per the New Education Policy 2024 from the 2025-26 session, the students can appear for their 10th and 12th board exams twice in a year.  This is done to reduce the academic pressure among students. Furthermore, students will get 10 bagless days in school every year.

Q3. How will the NEP address issues of access and equity in education?

The new education policy 2024 focuses on various key areas, among them are access to education and promoting equity in education. For this, it has prioritised the use of technology and promotion of skill-based learning. This will expand the scope of education to remote areas with online education and increase access to education. Meanwhile, there are steps to be taken to improve the quality of online and distance education so that no student has to give up his/her academics.

Q4. How will the NEP impact higher education in India?

The various features outlined by NEP intend to double the GER percentage in higher education till 2035 which will position India as a global education hub. The new education policy will bring flexibility to the curriculum through an interdisciplinary approach, multiple exit options, and encouraging internationalisation.

Q5. What is the role of teachers in the implementation of the NEP?

Right from the early stage of school education, teachers play an important in the effective implementation of

NEP. At the school level, teachers have to create a fun and activity-based learning environment which slowly will take the shape of project-based learning. Regular faculty training and evaluation will also be done. Teachers have to contribute to curriculum development and policy-making as per NEP 2024.

Q6. What long-term impact is expected from the NEP on the overall quality of education in India?

The New Education Policy’s long-term goal is to make India a global hub for education and skilled manpower in the next 25 years of ‘Amrit Kaal’. It provides valuable insights and changes to the drawbacks in the existing education system of India. This will enhance the quality of education and bring the education at par with the world.

Q7. How will NEP affect online and distance education?

In the new education policy of 2023, there is a huge focus on online and distance education to remove all the barriers and increase student participation in higher education. The following key initiatives are taken for online education as per NEP:

  • Pilot studies in online education

  • Strengthening of digital infrastructure

  • Boost in online learning platforms and tools

  • Blended mode of learning to be included

  • Proper training and incentives for teachers

  • Creation and regular upgradation of virtual labs


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