Ten years after drafting the National Curriculum Framework(NCF) in 2005, National Council of Educational Research and Training(NCERT) is all set to undertake a review of all its school textbooks to update the changes and analyse the fag ends. In 2005, NCF had drawn its policy from the earlier government reports on education. The focus of the NCF(2005) was to ensure overall development of the children.
The upcoming comprehensive review will be conducted by the Council’s Department of Curriculum Studies, under the assistance of Prof Ranjana Arora.“Over the last 10 years, the textbooks have been tweaked, but the changes were primarily based on complaints and feedback. A comprehensive review and update have been overdue for almost two years,” The Indian Express quoted a source as saying. The source further added,”“The country’s economic conditions have changed over a decade. The passage of GST, for instance, is a landmark shift in the country’s economic policy. The textbooks have to be updated to reflect the changes that have taken place.”
To promote inclusivity in the classrooms, NCERT has released a reading material based on Principles of Universal Design for Learning(or UDL), as reported by The Indian Express. The reading material was made keeping in mind the learning needs of the students. NCERT has also incorporated a reading series named “Barkha” which will include Braille vocabulary and illustration for the visually impaired students.
Earlier, In 2012, a controversy regarding an ‘offensive cartoon’ of B R Ambedkar had broken out. Following the huge uproar in the Parliament, former HRD Minister, Kapil Sibal had apologised for the offensive content. While speaking to reporters, he had said that “I am willing to personally apologise for it though I was not the minister at that time in 2006. I was involved in the publication of the books.”
He said there was no question of anybody trying to malign Ambedkar or anybody trying to make fun of him because that “I think will be against the secular ethos of our country,” ANI quoted him as saying. In September 2012, NCERT had dropped six “offensive cartoons” from four books of NCERT.