A few days back, I reflected on the New National Education Policy- 2020 in a brief write-up with the main focus on school education but one of the closest friends of mine expressed his concern and told me that I didn’t highlight the basic points with regard to the higher education with special reference to NEP-2020. Now, I am here to express my personal opinion with regard to the same. Before I express my opinion here, let us first highlight here a few main points which are envisaged in this new document – NEP-2020 with regard to the higher education:
Let us deliberate on the aforementioned points with regard to its implementation, validity and future perspective.
Existing Option: Let us talk first about the existing option, there is an apprehension that the maximum number of students will opt for this existing option and will avail diploma certificates and may leave their studies in between. This will further lower down the level of determination among the students.
Usually, when the experts design a course structure for any degree or diploma course, they give due care and attention to the course material. How can any half-completed course which is to be converted into the diploma course can be the replacement of the main diploma course. Do the students who availed such certificate or diploma courses will do justice with their profession? What will be the validly and relevance of such diplomaor certificate courses on the ground?
The abolishing of M.Phil Course- For those job seekers who have availed this course and those who are presently perusing this course through the various institution, this sudden announcement of scarping this particular course in the NEP-2020 created a chaos and confusion among them.
For them, it is like a Note- Bendi situation. There is no clear cut idea elaborated in the documented like what will be the fate of the student or a candidate with regard to his/her degree that he/she achieved after so much of hard work and heavy investment?
Encouraging top universities to run their campuses in other countries. In this regard, I would say charity begins at home if the government is sincere in their approach and if they considered education as the social sector rather than a business sector then there is a large scope within the country.
The government instead of encouraging these institutions to set up their campuses outside of the country, it would be better to motivate such prestige’s institution to set up campuses in the remote areas of the country so that the maximum number of students will avail the benefits of higher education.
Let us assume that any high-class university will fulfill all the necessary formalities and set up the campuses in other parts of the world. The question arises here- will that particular institution can retain the focus of attention at the main campus or maintain quality and control?
Similarly, there is a provision that the top 100 universities in the world will be facilitated to operate in India. Before giving the green signal to operate from here, there must be clear cut guidelines like how they will operate here?
After all, they have to utilize our local resources to run these institutions. Several other questions resonate in everybody’s mind -will they follow their own guidelines in the admission or recruitment processes or they will readjust their formalities or guidelines as per the law of the land where they are supposed to run these institutions?
Will our institutions compete with the foreign institutions or it will have become the cat and the mice game show?
Multidisciplinary institutions: With regard to making all higher education institutions multiple disciplinary institutions with a targeted enrollment of more than 3,000 is a big dream. It needs heavy investment to develop proper infrastructure to achieve this target. Will the government bear that economic implication?
The education minister made a statement that 6 percent of the GDP should be spent on education. It would be interesting to look at the figures on expenditure during previous years. If in 2013-2014, the spending on education was pegged at 0.71 percent of the GDP, it came down to 0.54 percent in 2018-2019.
This data reflects our non- seriousness and our casual approach towards the education sector. In spite of these facts, let us see how the government will achieve this target.
In the end, I would say every idea or policy is expected to bring positive systematic changes in the system, this is not an exception, but we need to remember that most of these plans and policy fail due to operational and implementation issues. Let us hope for the best.
Author is a teacher, Zone, Ganderbal