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SHILLONG | June 28, 2019:

Meghalaya Education Minister, Lahkmen Rymbui on Friday said that the State Government will face great difficulties in implementing the provisions laid down in the draft National Education Policy, 2019.

According to the Minister, the 448 pages draft National Education Policy of the Centre stated that the secondary level will be upto Class XII.

“This would mean that all existing secondary schools in the State which presently have classes upto Class X will have to create facilities upto Class XII. It will be very difficult for these schools since they would not have the necessary funds to upgrade their schools to Class XII. But the policy is silent whether or not the Centre will fund the existing secondary schools in the State to upgrade to Class XII,” Meghalaya Education Minister said after a review meeting on the proposed policy with the officials of the department yesterday.

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He said that the State Government will seek clarification from the Centre whether the secondary school which currently have classes till class X will have to upgrade their school upto class XII.

Meghalaya Education Minister said that the Meghalaya Government does not have the necessary funds to be able to support these schools upto Class XII.

Rymbui said that the State Government will also have to take into consideration another factor since children will start schooling from the tender of 3 years under the new proposed policy.

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He said that issues related to schooling were discussed thoroughly which include the age to start going to school is 3 years.

“If schooling has to start from the age of 3 till class XII (15 classes), this is a major issue we have to raise because many schools are facing space problem. If schooling start at the age of 3 years for pre-primary, the state which is facing financial crisis will have to see how it can provide fund to create infrastructure and appoint the teachers. We need to think how to take care of the secondary level from classes IX to XII, and who will fund these schools to upgrade them from classes X to class XII. These are issues that the state government wants the Centre to look into,” Rymbui stated.

He further said that the Government will also sought clarification since per the draft National Education Policy that the Hindi subject would be made upto class XII.

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“We will impress upon the State Government that the Hindi subject should be made compulsory from Class V upto Class VIII. We would like the Centre to maintain status quo on the issue of Hindi subject,” Meghalaya Education Minister said.

He further observed that the policy is silent on the educational institutions runs by minorities.

“We cannot overlook to the fact that most of the schools in the State are being run by the Christian Missionaries. The national policy did not mention about the role of school sponsoring bodies or school managing committees. We have taken the views of the minority run schools and we will talk to the Centre and seek its intervention,” Rymbui said.

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Meghalaya Education Minister, however, observed that the Centre will not like to implement anything which is detrimental to any particular State since Education is a subject which being looked by both the State Government and the Centre since it falls under the concurrent list.

Meanwhile, Meghalaya Education Minister said that as per draft National Education Policy, the institution of Bachelor degree for teaching profession or B.Ed at Tura will have to be close down since it is a ‘stand alone institution”.

“It is for this reason the State Government is planning to sent a proposal to recognize such kind of institution as “Extended Campuses”.

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