7 January 2017

NATIONAL POLICY OF EDUCATION 1986 and POA 1992 : Objectives And Recommendations


In a democratic country, there is need of democratization of education. In order to achieve education for all, so many initiatives and attempts have been made by the Government of India.
Through policy formulation, the government lays down directives for the future course of action towards realizing some perceived goals. In a democratic society, the goal lies in the various aspects of the welfare of the people. For the wellbeing of the Indian nation and the Indian society at the national and local level, definite thrust has been laid down on education. Even in early Indian history, education figured in the administrative policies of the government. 

The modern trend of development can be fruitfully traced to the British colonial government about which we have already discussed in the previous units. We have already come to know that such efforts and measures are being continued in the post independence time in India. In this unit, we shall focus on one of the important initiatives of the government of India towards democratizing education. This is reflected in the National Policy of Education, 1986 and its Modified Policy, 1992 which is known as Programme of Action.

NATIONAL POLICY OF EDUCATION 1986 and Programme of Action 1992
NATIONAL POLICY OF EDUCATION 1986 and Programme of Action 1992


In 1968, when the National Policy of Education was formulated for improving the educational scenario in our country, there it was envisaged that it would be followed by a ‘five yearly review to progress and working out of new policies and programmes.’ Regarding this statement, at the time of formulation of every new Five-Year plan, a review has been made to assess the drawbacks or shortcomings as well as achievements of education and finally to decide on some plans or programmes for the coming Five Years. It is through making the policies and programmes that every country seeks to develop its system of education to express and promote its unique socio-cultural identity and also to meet the challenges of the times. 

The National Policy of Education of 1986 is the result of the reviews which was discussed and adopted during the budget session of1985 when Rajiv Gandhi was the prime minister of India. Again, a committee was set up under the chairmanship of Acharaya Rammurti in May 1990 to review National Policy of Education (NPE) and to make recommendations for its modifications. The Central Advisory Board of Education, a committee set up in July 1991 under the chairmanship of Shri N. Janadhana Reddy, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh; considered some modifications in NPE taking into considerations the report of the Rammurti Committee and other relevant development having a bearing on the policy. 

This Committee submitted its report in January 1992, which is known as National Programme of Action of 1992. This policy aimed to promote national progress, a sense of common citizenship and culture, and to strengthen national integration. It laid stress on the need for a radical reconstruction of the education system, to improve its quality at all stages, and therefore gave much greater attention to science and technology, the cultivation of moral values and a closer relation between education and the life of the people.

Objectives of National Policy of Education and POA

The main objective of the National Policy of Education of 1986 and Programme of Action, 1992 was to establish a national system of education implies that all students irrespective of caste; creed, sex, and religion have access to education of a comparable quality. Actually, the objectives of this policy had been divided into the several aspects.

In relation to Elementary Education, followings are the major objectives of National Policy of Education 1986 are mainly:
  • Universal access and enrolment
  • Universal retention of children up to 14 years of age and 
  • A sustainable improvement in the quality education to enable all children to achieve essential levels of learning.
Regarding Secondary Education, National Policy of Education stressed on the improvement of the quality of secondary education. Effort to be made to provide computer literacy in as many secondary level institutions to make the students equipped with necessary computer skills.
Regarding higher education, National Policy of Education and Programme of Action of 1986 and 1992 emphasized that higher education should provide to the people with an opportunity to reflect on the critical social, economic, cultural, moral and spiritual issues.
Thus, the basic objectives of the National Policy of Education of 1986 and Programme of Action of 1992 emphasized that education must play a positive and interventionist role in correcting social and regional imbalance, empowering women, and in securing rightful place for the disadvantaged and the minorities. Government should take a strong determination and commitment to provide education for all, the priority areas being free and compulsory education, covering children with special needs, eradication of illiteracy, education for women’s equality and special focus on the education of S.C. s (Scheduled caste) and S.T. s(Scheduled tribes) and Minorities.
The educational policy as highlighted in the N.P.E. also emphasized on enhancing and promoting the vocationalisation of education, adult education, education for the mentally and physically challenged persons, non-formal education, open universities and distance learning, rural university, early childhood care and education. Delinking degrees from job was also one of the basic objectives of National Policy of Education of 1986.

Various Recommendations of National Policy of Education and POA

After going through the basic objectives of NPE of 1986 and its modified policy in 1992, the recommendations of the policy have been divided into the following 24 chapters.

Chapter-I: Early Childhood Care and Education: Integrated Child Development service, Balwadis, Pre-Primary schools of the State government and Municipalities, Day-care centres and training institutes of teachers and the existing facilities of pre-primary education should be strengthened and should receive increased attention from the Government. Besides these, the system of monitoring and evaluation should be strengthened.

Chapter-II: Elementary Education, Non-Formal Education and Operation Blackboard: National Policy of Education and its modified policy emphasized on elementary education as (i) universal enrolment and universal retention of children up to 14 years of age and (ii) a substantial improvement in the quality of education. Besides these, this policy also calls for drive for a substantial improvement of the primary schools and provision of support service. Even some measures have been proposed for securing participation of girls and of children from the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes families, other educationally backward section and minorities.

In the context of operational blackboard, the policy envisaged the following facilities that should be kept for implementing the operational blackboard. -(i) two reasonably large rooms that are usable in all weather; (ii) necessary toys and games material; (iii) blackboards, (iv) maps, (v) charts, and (vi) other learning materials.

Modern technological tools-such as solar packs for provision of power in non-formal education centres, audio-visual aids, radio-cassette players should be used to improve the learning environment of non-formal education centres, as well as to enhance the quality of non-formal education.

Chapter- III. Secondary Education and Navodaya Vidyalayas: Regarding Secondary education, the National Policy of Education of 1986 implied extension of the school system in the unserved areas consolidating the existing facilities and providing special arrangements for the gifted children and high achievers. The arrangements should require:

(i) Programme to ensure access to secondary education being widened to cover unserved areas.
(ii) Programme of consolidation in other areas;
(iii) Programme of setting up Navodaya Vidyalayas.

Besides these, as a short term measure the State Government should be persuaded to open secondary schools in unserved areas taking blocks as a unit having a lower ratio than 1:2:5 duly considering the present distance of habitation from the nearest secondary school and population in the unserved habitation.

Chapter-IV. Vocationalisation of Education: From classes 1 to 5, Socially Useful Productive Work/ Work Experience creates an integral part of the curriculum in many states. At the middle stage, the work experience programme should aim at developing confidence and sufficient psycho-motor skills to students through certain occupational training courses.

Chapter-V. Higher Education: The National Policy of Education of 1986 and its revised policy which is known as Programme of Action of 1992 had laid importance on higher education, particularly on graduate, post-graduate and research work. It suggested that Autonomous Colleges should be established according to UGC directives. Technical institutes like medical, engineering, agriculture universities etc. should be set up and development of Vocational skill was to be stressed upon.

Followings are the necessary strategies that should be kept up for improving the innovations in higher education.

(i) Consolidation and expansion of institutions
(ii) Development of Autonomous colleges and departments
(iii) Redesigning courses
(iv) Training of teachers
(v) Strengthening research
(vi) Improvement in efficiency
(vii) Creation of structures for co-operation at the state and national levels,
(viii) Mobility.

Besides these, the AICTE (All India Council of Teacher Education) had laid down norms and standards for diploma, degree and Post Graduate courses in the various fields. Guidelines were laid down for admission to technical institutions on merit to be followed by all concerned. The National Technical Manpower Information System had been set up by the Government of India with a view to generating strong data base in order to monitor the supply and utilization of engineering and technical manpower at the national and individual state level so as to ensure a planned development of technical education.


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