NCERT Receives ‘Deemed to be University’ Status
The National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has achieved a remarkable milestone as it is now officially recognized as a ‘deemed to be university.’ This prestigious status was announced by Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan during the 63rd Foundation Day celebrations of the NCERT.
“NCERT is already engaged in research and innovation. It is an institution of national importance and hence it has been granted the ‘deemed to be university’ status,”
This announcement was made at the main NCERT campus in the national capital, where a notification confirming the new status was unveiled. This development is poised to bring about significant changes and enhancements in the realm of education in India.
Expanded Educational Reach
With this ‘deemed to be university’ status, the regional and state councils of education across the country will now function as the off-campuses of NCERT. This expansion of its educational reach will enable NCERT to play a more comprehensive role in shaping the educational landscape of India.
NCERT’s Crucial Role
The National Council for Educational Research and Training, often referred to as the NCERT, serves as a think-tank for the school education system in India. It holds the distinction of being the apex organization responsible for developing textbooks for school education and is also at the forefront of implementing the new National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
NCERT is actively engaged in various educational activities, including:
- Educational Research
- Curriculum Development
- Creating Teaching-Learning Materials
- Developing Pedagogy Tools
These vital functions make NCERT a cornerstone of educational progress in the country.
While the grant of ‘deemed to be university’ status is a significant achievement, it is worth noting that universities have been advocating for the removal of the ‘deemed to be’ nomenclature, desiring to be designated simply as ‘universities.’
In response to this, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan indicated that once the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI) Bill is introduced and passed, the nomenclature will automatically change. This potential alteration holds promise for universities seeking a more straightforward title.
Furthermore, Minister Pradhan called upon top officials, including the Secretary of the Department of School Education and NCERT Director DP Saklani, to collaborate on the development of a national curriculum framework for teacher education. This initiative aims to enhance the quality of teacher training programs across the country.
Focus on Recent National Developments
Minister Pradhan also emphasized the importance of NCERT staying up-to-date with recent national developments. He urged the council to create concise content, such as booklets of less than 10 pages, covering significant national achievements and events. Examples mentioned include the successful launch of Chandrayaan-3 and India’s effective management of the Covid-19 pandemic. This approach ensures that educational materials remain relevant and timely.
Future of Secondary Education
In a forward-looking statement, Minister Pradhan hinted at a potential transformation in secondary education. He revealed ongoing discussions within the department about introducing professional courses directly after completing Class 10. These courses would be closely aligned with the job market, offering students the opportunity to enroll immediately. While the specific title for these courses is still under consideration, this shift represents a substantial change in secondary education that is currently in the planning stages.
The granting of ‘deemed to be university’ status to NCERT and the vision outlined by Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan reflect a commitment to advancing education in India and ensuring that it remains dynamic and responsive to evolving needs.