“ a compromise formula which includes a proposal to take top 20% students based on percentile ranking of respective boards for preparing the merit list”

How meaningless is this solution ?. Higher education in India will become the domain of the school toppers and Children of affluent parents and we wonder why half a million students leave India to study undergraduate courses overseas. Children who will never return to a country that shunned them.

Is this is what we call inclusive in RTE ?.

God Save India

Inclusive education does not mean that everyone must enter, or pass out from, an IIT. It only means that if you wanted to, you could have a shot at it. The child labourer is excluded because she can never dream of entering an IIT; she may absolutely hate IIT, but not trying to join an IIT should be her decision. Even if there is only one IIT train, every child must have access to the platform where the train comes. Of course, not everyone will get on to the train but everyone knows what to do to have a shot at the train. This is called inclusion in education. Everyone must go to school till class 12; those who work hard, and are willing to work harder still, will join an IIT. Others will, by choice, decide not to work that hard and become economists.

Shubhashis Gangopadhyay


All children are born equal and mindless politicians are trying to grade the children and youth of the nation and create a new Brahamanical Caste system in Education, which is pandering to the neo rich who can afford to send their children to elite private schools and Coaching schools.

"HRD Ministry of India wants to build castles of higher education on the bamboo scaffoldings of its schools" ~ Satish Jha

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Friday, June 8, 2012

213 - State Education Ministers Conference - MHRD


AGENDA ITEMS & BACKGROUND NOTES


5th June, 2012 At 11.00 A.M. The Banquet Hall, Hotel Ashok, New Delhi


MINISTRY OF HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT GOVERNMENT OF INDIA


AGENDA & BACKGROUND NOTES FOR THE STATE EDUCATION MINISTERS’ CONFERENCE 5th JUNE, 2012 AT 11.00 A.M.
Venue: Banquet Hall Ashok Hotel, New Delhi
1.
Confirmation of the Minutes of the State Education Ministers’ Conference held on 22nd Feb. 2012
4-27
2.
Joint Entrance Examination for Admission to Engineering Programmes in Centrally Funded Technical Institutions
28-37
3.
Indian Institutes of Information Technology Bill and Public Private Partnership for establishment of IIITs
38-40
4.
Implementation of RTE –SSA
41-61
5.
Revised Teacher Education Scheme
62-84
6.
Implementation of Sakshar Bharat
85-109
7.
Setting up Model Schools under Public Private Partnership
110-123
8.
National Vocational Education Qualification Framework (NVEQF)
124-127
9.
UGC Regulations on prevention of discrimination and establishment of Ombudsman
128-130
10.
Accounting Standards for Educational Institutions
131-132
11.
Setting up of Community Colleges
133-134
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11.00 -11.10
11.10- 11.15
11.15 -11.35
11.35-13.30 13.30-14.30 14.30-15.00
15.00 -16.50 16.50-1700


MINUTE TO MINUTE PROGRAMME
Inaugural Address by Hon’ble HRM
Agenda Item 1 Confirmation of the Minutes of the State Education Ministers’ Conference held on 22nd Feb. 2012 and Submission of Action Taken Report

Presentation on Agenda Item 2- Common Entrance Test for
Admission to Engineering Programmes
Presentation on Agenda Item 3- IIITs Bill and Establishment of IIITs on PPP mode
Discussion on Agenda Item 2 & 3
Lunch
Presentation on Agenda Item 4- Two Years of RTE –SSA Presentation on Agenda Item 5- Revised Teachers Education Scheme
Presentation on Agenda Item 6- Shakshar Bharat Discussions on Agenda Items
Concluding Remarks


STATE EDUCATION MINISTERS’ CONFERENCE 5th June 2012
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AGENDA ITEM 1 CONFIRMATION OF THE MINUTES OF THE STATE EDUCATION MINISTERS’ CONFERENCE HELD ON 22nd FEBRUARY, 2012
The State Education Ministers’ Conference was held on 22nd February, 2012 under the Chairmanship of Shri Kapil Sibal, Hon’ble Minister of Human Resource Development. List of the participants is at Annexure-I.
1. Hon’ble HRM in his opening remarks welcomed his colleague in the Ministry, Dr. D. Purandeshwari, Education Ministers of States, Secretaries of the Departments of Science and Technology, School Education and Higher Education, academics and officials of the Ministry of HRD and State Governments present in the Conference. HRM said that the reform initiatives are being implemented with the co-operation and support of the States. On the vocational front, a Committee was set up in 2011 under the Chairmanship of the Education Minister of Bihar, Sh. P.K. Shahi with the objective to strengthen vocational education throughout the country. The Report of the Committee has given valuable inputs into the National Vocational Education Qualification Framework (NVEQF) which is the main architecture of Vocational Education. He mentioned that substantial progress in different sectors of education has been made which include Right to Education, launch of Sakshaar Bharat and examination reforms at secondary level. In higher education, focus is on improving access with equity and excellence. HRM highlighted the need to ensure that our children are empowered to compete at every level. He said that what is of utmost importance today is to reduce the burden of children as they move out of school into the university system. Before the commencement of the proceedings, he condoled the demise of Dr. V.S. Acharya, Karnataka State Higher Minister who had demised recently on 14th February, 2012.
1.1. Thereafter the Minutes of the previous meeting held on 8th June, 2011 were confirmed and Action Taken Report on the same was noted by the Hon’ble Ministers participating in the Conference.
2. Agenda Item 1: Common eligibility test for higher education in science & engineering
2.1. Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology
Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, DST described the consultation process adopted by him and said that the concept of having an alternate admission system for looking at science and engineering subjects was proposed at the IIT council. At that time, it was recognised that some co-relation exists between the performance at State Boards and the final performance of an
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individual in the IIT system. Hence, a provision to include the State Board performance into admission system was felt necessary. Although a proposal was initiated to standardize the syllabus and curriculum so that all the State Governments will have the same system, but this, was not found feasible and it was decided to continue with the present diversity in the different State systems. The proposed system is a result of certain harmonization without losing the identity of each State Board in their present form. What is proposed in the new system is that all the State Boards will continue to have their own syllabi and their own testing protocols. While arriving at the formula, major State Boards with varying range of students appearing in the board exams such as West Bengal, Central Board and one of the smaller Board with a range of 25000 examinees, another with about six lakh and one more with ten lakh students taking exams were considered. All of them seemed to have a very simple algorithm which can be co-related. Indian Statistical Institute analysed the data of six years of about thirty lakh students coming from this process and it was found that a common co-relation exists regardless of the size of the Board. He then explained the formula of working out the percentile. In terms of benefits, all States in the country will retain their own state board systems and can now get a certain objective national test feed into the selection process. Certain institutions, such as the IITs, presently do not take into account performance in the school, as a result the students tend not to take school board exams seriously and focus only on the entrance examination. Now in the present analysis, the students will have to give importance to their board exams because certain percentage weightage will be assigned to it. Some percentages have been suggested but probably these can be finalised after discussion. He thanked all those who gave tremendous support in developing this particular formula. He stated that this was the outcome of a collective exercise of this committee and he believed that this august body should discuss and advice on the move forward. He visualised that this common test is best way forward which could reduce the number of board and competitive examinations which are far too many.
2.2. Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande, Director, IIT Kanpur.
Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande said that the main issue which the Government is trying to address is the menace of multiple entrance examinations. He said that the whole phenomena of entrance examinations started in mid-sixties, particularly when the National Institutes came into existence and entry was on an All-India basis. In the secondary and tertiary education, there is lot of stress on students as they have to appear in variety of entrance examinations, causing hardships and stress to students.
He referred to the earlier Committees and the systems of entrance examinations that emerged from their recommendations. These are the Khandelwal
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Committee, the Chandi Committee and the Acharya Committee. Subsequently the Ramaswami Committee was formed which went through a very rigorous methodology.
The Ramasami Committee is probably the first important exercise in the history of the country that enables one to compare the scholastic level of students from different States. According to the suggested formula, the percentile score is more important than percentage. He then explained in detail the proposed methodology envisaged for the new entrance examination.
2.3 Shri C. Damodar Raja Narasimha, Hon’ble Dy. Chief Minister, Andhra Pradesh
He stated that the Govt. of Andhra Pradesh welcomes the reforms initiated by the Union Government in streamlining the process of admission to Engineering Colleges in the country with the objective of doing away with the multiplicity of entrance examinations. He suggested a longer time frame for adoption of the National Curriculum from 2014 instead of 2013, which will give considerable space and preparatory time for the parents and students.
With regard to the conduct of new examination, in addition to National Language and English, he suggested that the option of regional language should also be incorporated as almost 40% of the +2 students write their examinations in the regional languages.
2.4. Shri Hemant Biswas Sharma, Hon’ble Education Minister of Assam
While welcoming the proposal for Common Entrance Examination, Shri Hemant Biswas Sharma, stated that it will re-emphasise the need of school education and also in some way, curb the racket of tuitions and coaching. He pointed out that students will have two syllabi one at the plus two stage and the other for aptitude and advance subjects for the entrance examination. He opined that by 2014 it would be possible to adopt some of the syllabi which is prepared for the common entrance test into the school curriculum as presently aptitude tests are not conducted in remote schools of rural areas. He requested to incorporate the syllabi for Entrance Examination in the National Curriculum for plus two, so that rural students can be prepared for the same in next two years.
Hon’ble HRM responded that there is no separate syllabus for the Entrance Examination. As far as rural and remote areas are concerned, the examination committee/professional committee will set the examination papers, taking into account
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students from both rural and urban areas. He felt that 2014 is too distant and was of the view to implement the system in 2013 itself.
The Hon’ble Minister of Education of Assam felt that the very fact that some marks will be given for the Board exam result will be beneficial for the students of remote states such as Assam, Arunachal Pradesh etc.. He extended wholehearted support to the proposal. HRM thanked the Minister and said that the system will improve year after year. The new examination should make a beginning in 2013.
2.5 Shri P.K. Shahi, Hon’ble Education Minister of Bihar endorsed the view of Honourable Dy. Chief Minister from Andhra Pradesh that one regional language should be included in the Exam. He also referred to the need for reduction of 40% weightage in Board examinations. HRM clarified that the new examination could commence in 2013 and as this system moves forward, it shall respect all the regional languages and efforts will be made to include them. In response to the request to bring down weightage for school examination, from 40%, HRM stated that though weightage of 40% is proposed, the States/ institutions are free to decide on it.
Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande, Director, IIT Kanpur clarified that no formula has been indicated by which the 40% weightage will be given for Board Exam Result and it would depend on the academic Institution. He, however, was of the view that that 40% weightage looks to be meaningful and sufficient.
2.6. Shri Brij Mohan Agrawal, Hon’ble Education Minister, Chhattisgarh,
Shri Brij Mohan Agrawal, Hon’ble Education Minister, Chhattisgarh demanded wide publicity of the proposed Rules and Regulations, before implementation and said that suggestions/ modifications may need to be incorporated. He mentioned that in Chhattisgarh, 32% people are tribals and detailed discussion is needed on how students from such States will be able to participate and take admission in the proposed Common Examination. He felt that adequate attention is not being paid to such remote areas, particularly Chhattisgarh and Odisha. Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande, Director, IIT Kanpur informed that when the Rules & Regulations are framed, this will be taken into consideration.
2.7. Shri Ishwar Dass Dhiman, Hon’ble Education Minister, Himachal Pradesh,
desired that concerns especially of students in backward areas, remote areas, affected
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areas should be taken into account while moving forward. Shri Ishwar Dass Dhiman felt that it is injustice to equate children with rural background with those of urban background and said that children in cities go to coaching centres whereas children in remote areas are deprived of this opportunity. As a solution, to enable equality, these coaching centres should be closed. With regard to reservation, he pointed out that all States cannot be considered equal in terms of development, some have language problem, and others have geographical disadvantage. He requested for more time to examine the pros & cons and to obtain feedback from States and suggested that the new proposal be approved only after detailed examination.
Prof. Dhande clarified that examination and admission are two separate processes. He said that this new process has made an attempt to ascertain if it could reduce examination stress in children. In so far as admission is concerned, full freedom has been envisaged to all States Educational Institutions. Only one suggestion has been made i.e. to give at least 40% weightage to Board exam, so that the State Boards, will get their due recognition. He again said that regional languages will be given due importance.
HRM clarified that efforts will be made to hold examination in regional languages as well. He also clarified that there will be more examination centres so that examinees from remote areas are not put up disadvantage. He agreed to the general perception that children of rural areas are neglected, but there is a need to change this situation by bringing in percentile system applicable for all Boards.
2.8. Mr. Jenab Abdul Gani Malik, Hon’ble Minister of Higher Education, J&K
Hon’ble Minister of J&K supported the proposal and felt that the new system will provide improved access to rural students. He felt that it is better than the existing system and that in the coming months more improvements can be put in place.
While supporting the proposal, he stated that nothing has been stated about reservation etc. HRM clarified that the existing reservation policy will be applicable for the proposed examination. Responding to this, Shri Baidyanath Ram, Education Minister, Jharkhand, demanded to consider differential cut-offs such as 50% marks for general category, 40% for SC/ST students. HRM clarified that it is not the matter of 40% marks, but 40% weightage for Schools Boards results, which will help in arriving at aggregate marks as this will also benefit poor students from rural areas.
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2.9 Shri Baidyanath Ram, Hon’ble Education Minister of Jharkhand was concerned that the new system gives equal weightage to students of urban areas to that of rural areas. Responding, HRM clarified that in order to settle this issue, the percentile system has been envisaged which will equalise the different Board marks. Shri Baidyanath Ram requested that the process of equalisation on percentile basis be elaborated. HRM clarified that the concerns expressed by him have been taken into account, and also the percentile formula was prepared in consultation with Indian Statistical Institute to bring in uniformity.
2.10 Dr. T Ramasami. Secretary, Department of Science & Technology clarified that there will a separate percentile, for SC/ST/OBC groups for inclusion and compliance of all provisions of the Constitution both in letter & spirit. Based on the last seven years data of 28 School Boards, it is seen that the inclusion of the Board Examination system in admission process helps in uniform distribution and inclusion of students from small towns and villages of far flung areas. The present entrance examination systems like IIT-JEE are still in favour of metros, whereas the Board Examination are more uniform, throughout the country.
In response to Karnataka Education Ministers’ demand for wider discussions, on the proposal, HRM informed that the Department will circulate the draft rules and take suggestions into account before attempting to start the proposed Examination in 2013. Shri Vishweshwara Hegde Kageri, Hon’ble Education Minister of Karnataka also informed that the State is changing the syllabus from the next year and requested for one more year extension i.e. 2014- 15 for the implementation.
2.11 HRM requested Prof. Dhande to clarify the issue. Prof. Dhande clarified that for the last fifteen years, this postponement is going on and more and more students are suffering every year. Thus, the time has come for all of us to initiate the change and be appealed to commence this new system of entrance examination in 2013. He further stated that the syllabus for this test will be based on the core curriculum of all the States. He also mentioned that there was a meeting of COBSE, the Council of Boards of Secondary Education, of all the States in which, 11 States were represented and they all supported the new examination pattern. So he felt that the new examination system could be implemented in 2013. Shri Baidyanath Ram, Education Minister, Jharkhand informed that the new examination pattern is acceptable but for making necessary preparation, some more time is required. The Education Minister of
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Jharkhand also desired to know as to what would be the image of IITs after implementation of this proposal.
2.12 Smt. Archana Chitnis, Hon’ble Education Minister, Madhya Pradesh
Smt. Archana Chitnis stated that IITs are an established brand with tremendous credibility and IIT students have an enviable reputation in India and abroad. She desired to know whether HRM had any discussions with experts about allowing IITs to join the new entrance examination or to keep it as a separate entity. If so, what is the opinion of experts? It was clarified by Prof. Sanjay Dhande that some faculty members had said that IITs will gradually be integrated into the new system.
Hon’ble Smt. Archana Chitnis suggested that it would be desirable to have separate examination for one or two years and integrate IIT into it subsequently. HRM responded that there would not be any problem, as IIT themselves have agreed for 15% weightage in the first year.
Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology further informed that in fact the IIT faculty will be setting the test for the main as well as the advanced examinations and that the process of integration of IIT Joint Entrance Examination has been considered. He further pointed out that the way entrance examinations are presently conducted, the children do ignore the State Board Examinations and take only the Entrance Examination. After a detailed discussion with all the faculty members and the IIT Council, this suggested combination of giving weightage to the board exam has been accepted.
Smt. Archana Chitnis desired to know who will set the question paper and who will be conducting the examination. HRM explained that while the academic matters will be handled by IIT, however, CBSE will be responsible for conduct of the examination. Smt. Archana Chitnis supported the proposal in concept and said that the percentile is not answer to all questions as two States may have different academic standards. Smt. Archana Chitnis also desired to know the per child cost for conducting this examination. HRM informed that whatever is the cost, the Centre will bear the expenses.
Prof. Sanjay G. Dhande further clarified that for all the Entrance Examinations taken together i.e. around 11 lakh in AIEEE, 6 lakh in JEE and other examinations put together, the number of examinees is around 20 lakh which will go upto 25 lakh within the next 20 years. As the two organisations, CBSE and IITs, have the capacity to
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conduct examinations for 12-15 lakh students, they could jointly carry out this task. Smt.Archana Chitnis also suggested that further discussions should be held before finally approving the proposed pattern of examination. HRM agreed to the suggestion and informed that it will be implemented with the consent of the States.
2.13 Sh. D.P. Savant, Hon’ble Education Minister of Maharashtra welcomed the National Common Eligibility Examination for engineering students. He said that he had some apprehensions in the beginning but after the deliberations made over here and the clarifications and detailed information given by Dr. Ramasami and Prof. Dhande, there are no questions and no queries from his side and he wholeheartedly supports the new Examination Pattern from 2013. HRM thanked him for his support.
2.14 Dr. R.C. Laloo, Hon’ble Education Minister of Meghalaya
While welcoming the Common Entrance Examination for Science and Engineering, he demanded that the prevailing state quota of seats for his state by the Ministry of Human Resource Development should not be disturbed and the State should be allowed to follow the existing procedure for selection of students for studies in different Engineering and Science Colleges in the country.
2.15 Shri Lalsawta, Hon’ble Education Minister of Mizoram
Hon’ble Education Minister of Mizoram while welcoming the proposal for reforms to relieve the burden of the students said that the State would like to continue the use of allocated seats from State. Regarding the Common Entrance Examination, he said that the State would like to have more details before joining the Common Entrance Test, but at the moment, it might be good if the State is allowed to continue with the present system of making selections from the State. HRM categorically informed that the quota for the North Eastern States will continue, and it will not be disturbed by the proposed examination.
2.16. Shri Pratap Jena, Hon’ble Education Minister of Odisha
While congratulating the Minister for various reforms initiatives, Hon’ble Education Minister of Odisha, welcomed the efforts being made to bring reforms to eradicate the differences between the students of the urban areas and the rural areas. While welcoming the examination reforms, he pointed out that when the Board realises that their percentile will enable the students in getting admission, then there could be manipulation in examination system at the Board level as well as in question paper
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setting so that their children will fare well in the Board exams. He said that Odisha has made all out efforts to implement the reforms measures, but he felt that the overall objective of the reforms should be to provide better quality of education. In response to Odisha Minister’s suggestion to give more weightage to the students of rural areas, HRM clarified that that the percentile system will take care of this aspect. Prof. Dhande further clarified that as regards giving weightage to Boards, the matter was discussed in a meeting with the Chairmen of the State Boards. They said that the transparency in the State Boards is increasing because of RTI. The second point they mentioned was that, if the State Board marks are going to be important for the process of admission, immediately there would be a positive feedback which will help the State Boards to improve. The State Boards are also interested in eradicating the malpractices, but unfortunately they are not getting empowered, because examinations are not having any importance in admission. So the issue raised by Hon’ble Minister has as much importance to all of us and the Department is addressing it.
Shri Pratap Jena also requested that the concept note be sent to all the States who should be given some time for more discussions at the State level and the State will give their observations and suggestions again.
2.17 Dr. D. Purandeshwari, MOS informed that this present meeting is basically to get the consent of all the State Governments to the reforms that are proposed by ushering in a Common Entrance Examination system. The procedure and the modality of the same will be decided after discussions with the State Governments and the State Governments will be taken into confidence before the relevant Rules and Regulations are framed. As regards the suggestion of Odisha Education Minister to send the concept paper to all the States, MOS (HRD) agreed to the suggestion and informed that the concept papers have already been placed on the Ministry’s website.
2.18 Shri Brij Kishore Sharma, Hon’ble Education Minister, Rajasthan
congratulated the HRM for bringing in the Common Entrance Examination and said that whatever reforms are taken into consideration by the Centre, the State will fully support it.
2.19 Shri N.K. Pradhan, Hon’ble Education Minister, Sikkim welcomed and extended support on behalf of Government of Sikkim for the proposal placed by the
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Ministry and hoped the new system of Entrance Examination will go a long way in bringing about important changes in the overall education system.
2.20 Shri Matbar Singh Kandari, Hon’ble Education Minister, Uttrakhand
welcomed the proposal and congratulated HRM for bringing in the Common Entrance Examination and expressed confidence that with the new pattern, there will be no commercialisation of education and it will be possible to get rid of donation as it will be a transparent process. In this context, he desired to know whether, there will be quota for each State.
Dr. D. Purandeshwari, MOS (HRD) clarified that there is nothing like a quota for the State Govt. as this is for children belonging to the entire country to be given an opportunity to get access to institutions such as the IITs. She further clarified that the proposed examination system will give equal opportunity to all children irrespective of rural or urban or any other bias, as such it had nothing to do with quota for States.
Shri Matbar Singh Kandari Hon’ble Education Minister of Uttarakhand, pointed out that in the educationally backward States, there is a concern as to how their students will benefit from this new pattern of examination. Prof. Dhande clarified that the percentile formula is a big breakthrough from the point of view of educationally backward areas. He, however, agreed with the Hon’ble Minister from Uttarakhand that at the time of implementation, it could be further improved. He felt that the percentile itself is an answer to many problems.
2.21. Shri Palaniappan P, Hon’ble Minister for Higher Education, Tamil Nadu
pointed out that there is strong evidence that a significant majority of people of Tamil Nadu considered CET as an additional and unnecessary burden on the students aspiring for admission to professional courses. The State of Tamil Nadu favours the elimination of CET on account of several disadvantages faced by different vulnerable sections of student population such as rural households, Tamil medium, and under privileged categories. The syllabus for the Entrance Test could be common, but standards across school boards differ. Students, therefore, are at a disadvantage. They believe that admission should be based on the quality of examination at ten plus two and this is established from the increase in the number of rural students availing
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admission to professional degree courses in the State. The percentage of rural students admitted into engineering courses during 2005 and 2006, when the common entrance test was conducted was 56.72% and 58.26% respectively. The Tamil Nadu Govt. was not in favour of Common Entrance Test and after the abolition of CET, this trend has reversed and the percentage of rural students has gone to 68.79% in 2011. Keeping this in mind, the issue of CET was taken up on the floor of the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly and it was unanimously decided that the State is not in favour of CET as it will be disadvantageous to the interest of students. Therefore, the Govt. of Tamil Nadu is not in favour of CET.
Dr. D. Purandeswari, MOS (HRD) responded that the Centre appreciates that Tamil Nadu has done away with the CET and is giving admission to the students based on Class 12 marks but that is for State Universities and State Institutions and not for IITs and central institutions. For IIT, students will again have to take a common national level exam. In the new pattern of examination, the IITs are made accessible to children coming even from the rural areas by simplifying the entrance exam process across all Boards. She clarified that this reform is to make it accessible for children across Boards to compete, whether they belong to the rural areas or to the urban areas.
Shri Palaniappan said that we need to ensure a level playing field to students from rural areas and poor families. MOS(HRD) clarified that the proposed exam will give an opportunity to the children coming even from the rural areas.
Dr. T. Ramasami pointed out that though the State of Tamil Nadu has eliminated the CET for the State, students seeking admission to any institution outside the state will have to take anywhere between seven to fourteen examinations in other places, in spite of the fact that there is no CET in Tamil Nadu. The proposed formula provides an opportunity for the country as a whole to include the weightage of State Board Examinations and provides an opportunity for normalizing the board scores and bringing one co-relation through a statistically, scientifically established way. He requested for the state of Tamil Nadu to welcome such a change.
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Shri Palaniappan P, Hon’ble Minister of Tamil Nadu Minister felt that the percentile formula in the new proposal needs careful and detailed study and agreed to examine the proposal in consultation with his Hon’ble Chief Minister and send response in due course.
Shri V. Umashankar, PS to HRM clarified that there are approximately 150 entrance examinations in India for Engineering. There is a need for reducing the multiplicity of these examinations which is possible with the co-operation of the States. The decision to fix the weightage has been given to the States. If a State wants to give 100% weightage to the State Boards, they are perfectly free to do that, whereas some other State may decide to give 40 % weightage and other States may decide National examination to be the basis. In response to the query raised by the State Minister whether Colleges outside MHRD would be joining the Examination, Shri Umashankar clarified that discussion has not been held with such institutions. At present, Central Institutions under HRD Ministry would be joining and for institutions under other Ministries, dialogue is open with them.
2.22. Shri Rabiranjan Chattopadhya, Hon’ble Education Minister, West Bengal
The Minister said that the State Govt. is yet to receive a copy of the Ramasami Committee recommendations. After receiving the copy, his Government will discuss the matter and give its opinion. He reiterated that as the examination is on All India basis, the syllabus particularly in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics should also be on all India pattern. Secondly, the medium of examination should be in English Hindi and Regional languages. MOS (HRD) informed that the Ramasami Committee recommendations are on the website of the Ministry. She clarified that initially the examinations will be conducted in Hindi and English but of course, later on, with wider consultations with the States, examination could be conducted in the regional languages as well.
2.23 Shri N.G. Pannir Selvam, Hon’ble Education Minister, Puduchery
He informed that earlier the State had Joint Entrance Test, but it proved to be disadvantageous to rural students. It was, therefore, abolished and at present students are admitted in the institutions functioning in the Union territory based on marks scored in plus two examination. He stated that the proposed Common Entrance Test will be examined in detail and they will convey their views shortly.
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MOS (HRD) clarified that this exam will be for the central institutions which are under the Ministry of Human Resource Development and only those State Government who want, may adopt this process for their own Universities, but the Ministry will not come in the way of the State Governments. The Centre will not tamper or interfere with the State Institutions and States are free to follow their own pattern. This exam is largely to facilitate children seeking admission into the centrally funded institutions.
2.24 Ms. Vrinda Swarup, Principal Secretary U.P.
Ms. Vrinda Swarup appreciated the proposal of the Centre and said that the proposal is in the right direction. The IIT entrance process is being broad based and School Boards, which were earlier neglected in this process, are finding place. She said that the State is accommodating almost a lakh students in B. Tech seats in U.P. every year. She also suggested to consider the validity of Common Entrance Score like SAT which will again reduce pressure on children to continuously keep competing and upgrading themselves. The other critical and related issue is that there is a large private sector which subscribes to seats in the engineering side and it is with great difficulty and through Supreme Court and High Court interventions that understanding has been reached to bring private institution into the Common Entrance Exam. She also pointed out that the issue of revenue sharing will have to be worked out in detail in the proposed examination system and the states must be part of the consultative process before the detailing on this aspect. Regarding the science exam, she said that, apart from the higher-end science institutions of the Central Government which need advance levels of science, to put a common B.Sc student through an entrance exam is something which cannot be endorsed.
MOS (HRD) conveyed that for B.Sc., the State Governments can decide their own formulas and the Centre will not be interfering in that. As a principle, entrance examination in Higher education, should not be encouraged as they create one more hurdle. She said that the revenue sharing pattern between the State Governments could be worked out. She also informed that since the initiation of this dialogue, the State Governments have been taken into confidence. The very concept of introducing a common core curriculum in core subjects in Science & Mathematics is to create an
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enabling atmosphere so that every child will have an equal opportunity to access these higher institutions.
Prof. Dhande said that regarding science streams, in the last five six years, a new system of Science Education has been introduced through the Indian Institute of Science Education & Research(IISERs).
3. Agenda Item II - Vocational Education
3.1. Presentation by Smt. Alka Bhargava, Director, D/o SEL, MHRD on National Vocational Education Qualification Framework (NVEQF)
Ms Alka Bhargava in her presentation on NVEQF gave an overview of the status of skill development in the country and the requirement for vocational Education. The target set for 2012-13 by the PMs National Council on Skill development is eighty five lakhs persons across all the seventeen plus ministries. She explained that the NVEQF has been divided into ten levels and the student will be having different options from class nine. Also in the framework a student can move from vocational to general education and vice-versa. She further stated that the vocational education which is happening in schools, would be partly skill development and partly general education so that this could pave the way for a progressive pathway for the student to follow and get skills as well as the certificate/diploma or degree at that particular level. She mentioned the development of the National Occupational Standards (NOS) but even with the development of NOS, the curriculum and the course material will have to be reviewed periodically and the training material etc. will have to be tailored accordingly after every three to five years. She concluded by drawing attention to the recommendations of the Report of Group of Ministers that that there should be a co-ordination cell for vocational education in the states consisting primarily of Departments of Education, Labour & Industry along with local industry so as to have a strategy and then implement NVEQF at all different levels across sectors.
3.2. Presentation by Dr. S.S. Mantha, Chairman AICTE on Vocational Education
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In his presentation, Dr. Mantha said that currently no framework is in place for vocational education to lead students to get a diploma or a degree in vocational education. The National Vocational Education Qualification Framework aims to build skills and general education together at several certificate levels and progress to diploma and further to a degree. He explained that the principles used in NVEQF include localized approach, maximum impact skills and sectors are identified. The framework covers various sectors, vocational courses are of short duration, focused, modular, practical hands on, delivery in local languages, through full day, half day or week end programmes, network of centres, full mobility between formal, vocational streams of education and the job market with multi point entry and exist. In 2012, AICTE would be in a position to implement this Vocational Programme.