The Department of Primary and Secondary Education has decided that there will be no cuts in the curriculum for students in grades I to X for this academic year 2021-22.
Talk to The Hindu, BC Nagesh, minister of elementary and secondary education, said the decision was made after consultations with teachers and stakeholders. “During the review meetings, teachers and department officials said that they have completed a significant portion of the game for this year, as offline courses for upper primary and high schools have started,” did he declare.
The department, however, is still making a plan for how teachers will cover all parts for this school year. Many teachers also expressed the importance of spending time reviewing the basics of the previous year and transition learning, as several studies have shown that students’ learning outcomes have been affected over the course of the previous school year.
In the 2020-21 academic year, the government cut the schoolchildren program by 30% as the academic calendar was disrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Impact on quality
Not all principals share the government’s confidence that the entire program will be covered. D. Shashi Kumar, General Secretary, Associate Directorates of Karnataka Primary and Secondary Schools, said they had called for the program to be reduced by 15-20% this year as well. âIf there is no cut in the curriculum, we will only be able to teach the concepts in a very superficial way. This will have a negative impact on the quality of teaching and learning, âhe said.
He also pointed out that there was a significant delay in reopening schools, and only now have schools been allowed to operate all day. âUntil October, our teaching hours were reduced and we were unable to complete the program,â he said.
Many teachers have reportedly told department officials that they would only be able to complete portions if Saturdays were also working days.
“Focus on the foundation”
According to education experts, schools should not focus on completing the program, but rather ensuring that children acquire foundational skills that they lost in the previous school year. Nagasimha G. Rao, Director of Child Rights Trust said: âIt is important to recognize that a child’s learning levels are not the same and that there is a need to change the structure of this school year. Teachers should not be in a rush to complete this academic year’s program.