India has had three National Education Policies to date. Parliament passed the first education policy in 1968 - on the suggestions of a 17-member Education Commission headed by then UGC Chairperson D S Kothari.
The second NEP was launched in 1986 to introduce 10+2 structure of school education, the NEP of 1986 was revised in 1992. Now the third - National Education Policy, 2020, released in March 2020.
National Education Policy, 2020The National Education Policy, 2020 proposes changes - including opening up of Indian higher education to foreign universities, dismantling of the UGC and the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), introduction of a four-year multidisciplinary undergraduate programme with multiple exit options, and discontinuation of the M Phil programme.
In school education, the policy focuses on easier Board exams, a reduction in the syllabus to retain core essentials and thrust on experiential learning and critical thinking.
The policy also talk about universalization of education from preschool to secondary level with 100 per cent Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) in school education by 2030.
A new accreditation framework and an independent authority will be setup to regulate both public and private schools.
A new and comprehensive National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education (NCFTE) 2021, will be formulated by the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) in consultation with National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT).
By 2030, the minimum degree qualification for teaching will be a 4-year integrated B.Ed. degree.
The new NEP pitches for a "5+3+3+4" design corresponding to the age groups 3-8 years (foundational stage), 8-11 (preparatory), 11-14 (middle), and 14-18 (secondary).
The NEP also says - students until Class 5 should be taught in their mother tongue or regional language.
The mid-day meal programme will be extended to pre-school children.
Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education to be raised from current 26.3 per cent to 50 per cent by 2035.
All institutions offering single streams should phase out and universities and colleges must aim to become multidisciplinary by 2040.
The National Research Foundation will be created as an apex body for fostering a strong research culture and building research capacity across higher education.
Higher Education Commission of India (HECI) will be set up as a single umbrella body for the entire higher education, excluding medical and legal education. It will have four independent verticals - National Higher Education Regulatory Council (NHERC) for regulation, General Education Council (GEC) for standard setting, Higher Education Grants Council (HEGC) for funding and National Accreditation Council (NAC) for accreditation.
An autonomous body, the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), will be created to provide a platform for the free exchange of ideas on the use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration.
Affiliation of colleges is to be phased out in 15 years and a stage-wise mechanism to be established for granting graded autonomy to colleges.
National Assessment Centre 'PARAKH' has been created to assess the students.
The Policy also paves the way for foreign universities to set up campuses in India.
It also aims to increase the public investment in the Education sector to reach 6 per cent of GDP from current 4.6 per cent on education.
ImplementationThe Centre plans to officially roll out some initiatives promised in the National Education Policy (NEP), such as a credit transfer system that will allow multiple entry and exit options in higher education, as well as engineering programmes in regional languages.
The Academic Bank of Credit will be rolled out for students in over 290 top institutions from the current academic year 2021-22 onwards.
All institutions in the top 100 of the National Institutional Ranking Framework as well as those who have achieved an A grade under the National Assessment and Accreditation Council will be allowed to participate in the credit transfer system.
PM Modi will also announce the establishment of the National Digital Education Architecture and National Education Technology Forum.
Mr. Modi will also roll out Vidya Pravesh, a three-month play-based school preparation module for Class 1 students which was recommended by the NEP.
Related InfoIn India education is a concurrent subject, therefore the NEP only provides a broad direction and is not mandatory to follow. The 42nd Amendment to the Constitution in 1976 moved education from the State to the Concurrent List.
The 86th Amendment in 2002 made education an enforceable right under Article 21-A.