Local BJP MP Kirron Kher has recommended that ‘peace education’ be made part of school curricula and that students should be taught to celebrate the religious and cultural diversity of India.
In a long list of recommendations for the planned New Education Policy, Kher has suggested that Chandigarh’s PPP model for higher education should be replicated and scaled across India, as Chandigarh is amongst one of the leading cities in the country in terms of its gross enrolment ratio (GER).
MP Kirron Kher sent the recommendations to the UT Education Department as inputs for the New Education Policy 2015. The UT Education Department had initially submitted its proposal to the Ministry of Human Resource Development on November 2. The MHRD sent it back to the UT, with Minister Smriti Irani’s directive that Kher’s suggestions be incorporated.
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In her proposals for promotion of ‘peace education’, Kher has suggested that “peace clubs” and libraries should be set up in schools, and supplementary reading material should be made available to further promote “peace skills”. Further, she has suggested that a pool of films and documentaries that promote values of justice and peace should also be screened in schools.
She has also recommended that schools organise activities to promote India’s religious and cultural activities, and Human Rights Day, Girl Child Day, Environment Day etc should be observed in schools. For promotion of Indian languages, she has suggested that mother tongues should be made part of the Indian education system, as focus on English languages only will lead to extinction of Indian languages.
When asked to elaborate on these proposals, the BJP MP declined comment, stating that she had handed over the proposals for the education policy to the administration, and it was now up to them to look into the implementation part of it.
For improvement of GER, she has suggested that higher educational institutes should offer a wide variety of evening/night courses which can be availed by students who wish to also work to support their families. In senior and secondary education, classes on menstrual hygiene management should be taught, and schools should abolish the stigma about such issues, she has stated.
Replicating the models of states like Tamil Nadu and Bihar, Kher has also said that in order to encourage girls to study more, schools should give access to facilities like bicycles to the girl students.