- Kendriya Vidyalayas attempting to move beyond textbooks and encourage originality
- A senior HRD ministry official said the initiative was pushed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Representative image (AP photo)
With the ‘Back to Basics’ initiative, as it is being called, the 1,200 Kendriya Vidyalayas are attempting to move beyond textbooks and encourage originality among its 12 lakh students.
The reforms are being rolled out in the current year with KVS also putting in place a 1,000-point system of annual targets to assess its schools.
The heads of schools have been given greater autonomy to devise an annual plan, on which the school will be rated. A senior HRD ministry official said the initiative was pushed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has taken personal interest in improvement of KV schools.
When the revamped curriculum is implemented, students will get access to popular computer games such as Minecraft and Kadu game lab, a visual programming tool and to fire their imagination. Hackathons are also planned for classes XI and XII. What triggered the reforms, officials said, was a “troubling” focus on academic scores as the sole assessment criterion. KVs’ Class XII pass percentages in the past five years have been more than 95%. According to officials, an internal assessment found that only 5% of these schools were ‘average’ performers. “Such assessments are not reliable as these are solely based on Class XII results and can be disastrous in the long run,” an official said.
“The reforms aim at achieving learning outcomes set by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) right from Class I,” said U N Khaware, additional commissioner (academics), KVS.
Under the ‘Back to Basics’ plan, Khaware said schools will be graded on a 1,000 point scale for which a detailed pro forma has been prepared to assess schools on all aspects – from infrastructure to academic development.
“The heads of schools have been asked to set their annual target, which is based on what a specific school depending, on its resources, is capable of achieving. No target can be lower than the previous target or the average of achievement of past three years,” said Khaware.
However, schools will not be penalised as the initiative aims at capacity-building. Multiple inspections and an audit in March will analyse performance “to understand the reasons which lead to either success or failure, so that we can draw from the experience and improve,” said Khaware.
The point system will reward achievements in many ways. For example, if students from a school that lacks adequate infrastructure do well in sports, the school will get grace points.