New Education Policy Could Replace CABE With NEC

Ministry of Human Resource Development could be renamed as Ministry of Education

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The final version of draft National Education Policy (NEP) has recommended replacing CABE with the National Education Commission (NEC) as the apex body on education that can work on key matters on a continuous basis.

The final draft said that while NEC will act at the central level and chaired by the Education Minister, similarly State Education Commission (SEC) should also be set up, chaired by the state education minister.

It has also suggested renaming the Ministry of Human Resource Development as the Ministry of Education. “The existing functions and roles within the Ministry of Education shall be reviewed, mapped, and harmonised with the NEC for complementarity,” the draft said.

The Narendra Modi government is expected to examine the recommendations at the Union Cabinet meeting soon.

 The objective of replacing CABE with NEC:

The Central Advisory Board on Education CABE), the draft said, played a crucial role in shaping the education system in the country, but it was unable to address the issue of radical changes in the system for the great leap forward. CABE was an ad-hoc body and failed to meet regularly.

NEC, on the other hand, will be a regular body and consist of 30 members, two-third of whom eminent educationist, researchers and leading professionals. The commission will have a permanent secretariat headed by an executive director who shall be a person of eminence in the education sphere.

Role of NEC:

It will devote its resources for developing, articulating, evaluating, and revising the vision of education in the country on a continuous and sustained basis in close collaboration with the corresponding apex bodies of States. It shall also create and continuously review the institutional frameworks that shall help attain this vision.

Composition of NEC:

  • It will be chaired by the Union Education Minister.
  • It shall comprise of 30 members
  • Two-third of the members will be eminent educationist, researchers, leading professionals from arts, science, business, health, agriculture, social work from India and abroad.
  • NEC shall also include some of the Union Ministers, in rotation, whose ministries impact education directly such as Health, Woman and Child Development and  Finance.
  • There would be few Chief Ministers of States, in rotation, Vice-Chairperson of the Niti Aayog, the Secretaries in the Ministry of Education, and other such senior bureaucrats and administrators as the government may deem appropriate.

Composition of SEC:

  • The respective SECs can have state ministers of education-related departments as members.
  • It shall also have eminent educationists and professionals
  • Then there would be a senior representative from the NEC, the secretaries in the Department of Education, and other such senior bureaucrats and administrators as the government may deem appropriate.

The SECs can also consider having a permanent secretariat for continuous expert analysis and recommendations for corrective actions. The creation of SECs in the States will also facilitate better coordination with the NEC, the draft report said.

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