The West Bengal Department of Education has recently introduced its updated State Education Policy (SEP), confirming the retention of the existing 5+4+2+2 schooling framework.
What is this New State Education Policy?
On September 9, the Education Department made this significant announcement, emphasizing the continuity of the 5+4+2+2 model. Under the SEP’s provisions, schooling will persist with the 5+4+2+2 pattern, as stated by a representative from the education department.
This structure mandates that students undergo one year of pre-primary education, followed by four years of primary schooling until class 4, succeeded by two years of secondary education and an additional two years of higher education.
The education authorities have introduced semester-level exams for higher secondary education, which meticulously facilitate the gradual transition from school to university. And these exams encompass both multiple-choice and descriptive questions across two semesters.
Regarding the three-language formula, the SEP articulates its introduction for students in classes 5 to 8, contingent upon infrastructure availability. The second language selection is flexible, allowing students to choose any language distinct from their first, with an emphasis on the mother tongue as the primary medium of instruction.
For instance, Bengali in Bengali medium schools, Nepali in Nepali medium schools, and Hindi in Hindi medium schools.
Furthermore, the policy ardently advocates the implementation of summer internship programs or projects for secondary and higher secondary students, with partnerships forged with media outlets, book publishers, and business enterprises.
In terms of assessment, the SEP recommends conducting annual State Achievement Surveys to gauge the performance of students in Grades 3, 5, 8, and 10. Notably, this aligns with the current educational policy.
Addressing imbalanced pupil-teacher ratios (PTR) in specific districts, the SEP stipulates that teachers must serve for a minimum of five years in rural areas within the state. Additionally, the policy suggests a performance-based approach to teacher promotions.
To bolster research endeavors within the state’s higher education institutions, the SEP envisions the establishment of a dedicated research funding entity, the State Research Fund, under the purview of the West Bengal State Council of Higher Education (WBSCHE). The WBSCHE will identify key research areas and recommend suitable funding avenues.
The West Bengal Department of Education’s latest State Education Policy underlines its commitment to enhancing the quality of education and empowering students for a brighter future.