New Delhi: A proposal seeking extension of the Right to Education to pre-school and secondary levels will come up for discussion by the Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE), a top body advising the Centre and states on education reforms, on August 19.
The status report of a CABE sub-committee on extension of RTE Act and no-detention policy would be taken up for exhaustive deliberation at a meeting of the newly reconstituted body to be chaired by HRD Minister Smriti Irani. It would be attended by education ministers from states besides academicians and distinguished people from several fields.
As per the current provisions, the Act applies from Class I to Class VIII. The objective of its extension is to bring uniformity in the policy for admitting the little ones at the nursery level and checking drop outs beyond Class VIII up to Class X.
The CABE sub-committee in its report submitted in 2012, when UPA was in power, had identified issues such as entry age for pre-school under the extended framework, qualification and capacity building of teachers at the pre-primary level, age of children in secondary education and duration of secondary education.
Chairing the last CABE meeting, the then HRD Minister M M Pallam Raju had said the matter needed comprehensive discussion before a decision on extending RTE's purview was arrived at.
On its extension to the pre-primary level, the panel had suggested ensuring child-centered pedagogy, play-way method and holistic development as critical elements of pre-school education and stressed on the need for effective coordination with Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS).
For RTE's extension up to the secondary level, the sub-committee had suggested assessment of existing infrastructure, appointment of additional teachers and recommended consultations with all stakeholders including the state governments.
The role and regulatory mechanism of the private sector and sharing of financial responsibility between the Centre and states were some of the other issues highlighted by the panel for detailed discussion.
CABE would also deliberate on the report of another sub-committee on no-detention policy up to class VIII. The committee headed by the then education minister of Haryana Geeta Bukkal had recommended doing away with it as automatic promotion affected learning outcomes.
A few states have already repealed the policy, which had come into effect with the implementation of RTE by bringing in necessary amendments to the state rules.