State govt sitting on report on regulation of pre-primary schools

Minister of State for School Education Fouzia Khan said work on framing regulations based on the report was still on.

Pune | Updated: February 6, 2014 12:59:20 pm
Minister of State for School Education Fouzia Khan said work on framing regulations based on the report was still on. Minister of State for School Education Fouzia Khan said work on framing regulations based on the report was still on.

The state government has been ‘sitting’ on a high-power committee report which has recommended measures for regulation of pre-primary schools mushrooming in the state.

Addressing the media in the city on Thursday, Minister of State for School Education Fouzia Khan said work on framing regulations based on the report was still on.

The committee, headed by Khan herself, had come out with a detailed report on regulating pre-primary education in 2012. Almost a year after it was submitted, the state government made the report public in August last year and invited suggestions and objections.

As per the recommendations in the report, the pre-primary schools and learning centres will have to ensure a classroom measuring at least 300 sq ft for a group of 20 children and make available 700 sq ft of outdoor space for sports. The schools should avoid screening children or parents and abide by the proposed Fee Regulation Act.

The report has highlighted that there is no clear-cut criteria on age for pre-primary education, children are being taught syllabus prescribed for Class I and Class II for which they are neither cognitively nor physically mature, apart from unsuitable methods of student assessments.

It has also observed that many pre-primary centres expect a child to understand English, which may not be their mother tongue. It also points out the presence of untrained or poorly trained teachers in these schools.
Educational activist Matin Mujawar said the government must come out with regulations for pre-primary education before the start of the next academic year.

“The commercialisation of education starts with pre-primary schools. The government report has accepted this fact along with raising other serious objections. No further delay should be made in framing regulations for pre-primary schools, which are still out of government purview,” he said.

Meanwhile, reiterating the government plan to provide grades to schools in the state, Khan said an idea to ensure accreditation for educational institutes on the lines of higher education was being considered.

“If schools are accredited, parents will be able to easily find best schools for their wards. The move will also introduce competition among schools for achieving academic excellence,” she said.

Khan was in the city to attend the silver jubilee celebrations of Maharashtra Cosmopolitan Education Society’s Abeda Inamdar Junior College. Meritorious students were felicitated by her on the occasion.

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