The decision by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) to drop specific chapters from the curriculum appears to be part of an effort to manage and streamline the academic burden on students during the challenging COVID-19 pandemic.
However, the choice of the chapters being dropped may lead to some debates:
Periodic Classification of Elements: This is a core chapter in chemistry and forms the basis for understanding many concepts in higher classes. Reducing this content may require students to catch up on these concepts later, which could potentially be challenging.
Democracy and Diversity, Challenges to Democracy, and Political Parties: These chapters are crucial for understanding the political system, democracy, and the importance of diversity. If these topics aren’t covered sufficiently, students may lack understanding of these key concepts in a democratic society.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced educational institutions worldwide to rethink and restructure their methods of teaching and curriculum. While it’s important to minimize the academic pressure on students during these challenging times, it’s equally crucial to ensure that essential learning isn’t compromised.
With the advancement of digital learning tools, these subjects could be taught using other methods, such as online classes or supplementary materials, ensuring students still have access to this important knowledge.
It’s worth noting that changes in curriculum can have significant consequences, both intended and unintended, so it’s important that such decisions are made after thorough review and consideration of their potential impact on students’ learning.
The additional information provided sheds more light on the NCERT’s decision-making process. It seems that the organization’s choices were guided by a number of factors:
Overlap of content: If the same or similar content is being taught in other subjects or grades, removing it from one place can reduce redundancy and potentially lessen the load on students.
Difficulty level and accessibility: It appears the NCERT has prioritized content that students can learn easily on their own or through peer-learning. If some parts of the curriculum are particularly challenging and can’t be easily understood without teacher intervention, they may not be suitable for distance learning environments.
Relevance: The NCERT has chosen to omit content that is deemed irrelevant in the present context. Though what exactly this means is not detailed in the statement, it likely involves evaluating the applicability of the knowledge in today’s world and in students’ futures.
National Education Policy 2020: This policy emphasizes reducing the content load on students and fostering more experiential and creative learning. The NCERT’s decision aligns with this goal.
Learning Outcomes: The NCERT has developed specific learning outcomes for each class, and it seems these outcomes guided the organization’s choices in terms of what to retain and what to omit from the curriculum.
The removal of chapters like environmental sustainability and sources of energy may be contentious, given the current global focus on climate change and renewable energy. However, without more specific information about the curriculum as a whole and the other places where this content might be taught, it’s challenging to evaluate the full impact of these decisions. It’s also worth noting that curriculum development is an ongoing process that involves regular review and adjustment, so the NCERT’s choices may change again in the future.