Chunauti Scheme Launched in Delhi to Improve Learning of Govt. School Students

Published Date - 04 December 2017 08:40:15 Updated Date - 04 December 2017 08:41:11

The ones who can read are called “Pratibha” and the ones who cannot are “Nishtha”. In class 9 there is another group called “Vishwas” which includes those who are out of school and have failed twice in the class.

The Chunauti plan divides children into groups on the basis of who can read and write Hindi and English, and solve mathematical problems.

The state government of Delhi  has launched Chunauti Scheme for primary class students (Class I to V). Earlier, this scheme was launched for students in Class 6 to 9. This scheme will help in correcting learning disparities among the students.

Under the Chunauti Scheme, all the students from the primary class will be segregated. The segregation of the students will be based on their learning abilities. The selected student will be given special classes in government and municipal schools.

Recently, a meeting was held in Delhi during which state advisory council for education has taken this decision. This decision was based on the success of Chunauti scheme in Classes 6 to 9. This scheme will improve the learning levels among students.

Chunauti Scheme for Students

The education department will organize a test to read, write Hindi and English and solve mathematical problems. On the based of test, students will be segregated for the benefits of the scheme. As per the assessment, it was found that 74% of 2,01,997 children studying in class 6th could not read a paragraph from their own Hindi textbooks and 46% could not read a Hindi story of Class 2 level.

The state advisory council for education has decided to rank private and government schools of the state. The rank will be given on the basis of many parameters including academics, sports activities, cleanliness, exam results and extracurricular activities. The ranking of schools will be overlooked by the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR).

The government will conduct a door-to-door survey with the help of Anganwadi workers to compile data on students who are dropped from the schools. Moreover, the government would find some volunteers who would help in ascertain those students who are out-of-school in their respective areas. They will help in enrollment of those students in the school.

Moreover, the government will launch a toll free helpline number to get the information about the students. In addition, the special training will be given to principals and teachers on how to behave with the students who are coming from economically weaker sections (EWS).

Teachers back scheme

With autonomy given to the principals, schools have devised their own mechanisms to implement the scheme. In almost 10 schools HT visited, readers are part of the first few sections (A,B,C) depending on the size of the class. The remaining ones have children in the Nishtha group.

There are also schools which have kept students of the two groups in same class, but they sit separately.

Dividing children is one aspect of the scheme. The intervention actually comes with the introduction of “Pragati--I” books. The government describes Pragati books as supplementary material which will help Nishtha groups read to understand syllabus of their class.

These are thin books like workbooks provided for each subject. The books have one page of text explaining the lesson. For instance, science textbooks of class 6 have one page explaining the earth’s rotation and revolution. A student generally learns about the earth when they are in class 2 or 3.

 

The next lesson in the same book is about ‘adi manav’ (early man). After every page of text, there are series of question and answers, match the following and other activities to test the students’ understanding of the concept.

Pragati books were already being provided before the formal launch of Chunauti 2018.

“We have already completed teaching from Pragati-1 books. We are now waiting for the Pragati-2 books ,” said Sonika, an English teacher at Sarvodaya Bal Vidyalaya in central Delhi.

She added that once a lesson from the book is over, it is used for revision twice a week. Children are taught from the NCERT syllabus in the remaining four days of the week.

“We have been told that for summative assessment –1 there will be different question papers for the two groups. For the Nishtha group it would be a focused syllabus,” said a guest teacher.

In this process, the details of the syllabus for the SA-1 which is scheduled for this month, has been delayed.

“Earlier we used to get weekly syllabus with the timeline of when what was to be taught. This time, we have got a monthly syllabus that too handwritten,” said a Sanskrit teacher on condition of anonymity.

After SA-1, the government has planned another parent-teacher meeting (PTM). The government has even set a deadline of November 14 to achieve 100 % learning ability.

“This is a novel start to a problem which was not addressed for many years. But the government first needs to remove confusions mostly relating to syllabus and assessment.” said a school teacher in Sunder Nagri.

Few teachers with whom HT interacted, believe that the intervention will be successful with a focus on language.

“If a student will know how to read and write in Hindi then automatically improvement in other subjects will show. Take mathematics for instance. Once a student can read the question of the problems then he or she will also be able to solve it,” said a mathematics teacher.

But teachers say the most difficult part of this scheme has been explaining the division to parents and students.

“Parents come and ask us to shift their children to the first few sections. It is difficult to tell them why this has been done,” said a social science teacher.

Psychological effects

He adds that the division has also psychologically affected some students.

Akshay, a 7th standard student of Government Boys Senior Secondary School in Molarbandh, said, “I know how to read and write Hindi but still my teacher has shifted me here. I don’t like being in this class.”

Educationists had warned that Chunauti 2018 would have psychological effects.

“The major issue with Chunauti is that children are being labelled and it also violates provision of the Right to Education Act. Children cannot be termed as slow learners by testing them on lesser known set of books. There are times when children cannot talk until they are two years old. But after that they speak entire lines fluently. This is the magic of development. But this kind of labelling is extremely dangerous and fascist,” said Janaki Rajan, educationist and teacher at Jamia Milia Islamia.

 


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