Focus on developing fluency in mother tongue

Staff Reporter

KOZHIKODE: National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) secretary Anita Kaul has said that the National Curriculum Framework 2005 prepared by the NCERT encourages children to develop fluency in their mother tongue.

Ms. Kaul was presenting a paper at the session `Community participation in education' at the National Education Assembly 2005 organised by the All India People's Science Network (AIPSN) in association with the NCERT here on Saturday.

The curriculum also explores how this fluency in the mother tongue can be facilitated to the speaking/learning of other languages. It delves on how children can interact with the community. ``The curriculum also discusses how community can contribute to the development of children's language. It also focuses on preparing children to ask questions.''

She said various programmes such as the District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) and the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan were framed without the grama panchayat and other local bodies in mind. ``It is like bypassing the elected system.

We are creating a parallel system,'' she said.

She observed that even though political decentralisation had occurred, administrative and financial decentralisation has not taken place in the country.

Vinod Raina, general secretary, Bharatiya Njan Vidyan Samithi, and a member of the sub-committee of the draft committee for drafting the Elementary Education Bill to be placed in Parliament soon, said that terms such as `school,' `teacher,' and `curriculum' would be defined in the Bill.

The other proposals include making primary education free in government and aided institutions.

The common school system which envisages that children of a particular area attend a common school only will be included in the proposals.

At least 25 per cent of the admissions to unaided schools should be made available to children of the people of the area where the school is located.

The mother tongue should be the medium of instruction of children for the first five years. English could be taught only after five years.

The Government spending on education should be increased from the existing four per cent to six per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the National Education Assembly, Sandeep Pande, Ramon Magsaysay award winner, said that a fast of activists from India and Pakistan and other South Asian countries would be organised at the Rajghat on August 9 as part of a campaign for a `Borderless and nuclear-free South Asia.'

Earlier in the day, Prof. Yashpal, former chairman, University Grants Commission, presented a paper, `An introduction to national curriculum.'

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