Detention policy – Pros & Cons
Learning is focused on building primary & primitive concepts in one’s mind, this can help the people of any age group to develop an interest in learning and encourage them to study further with or without the fear of failure or improvements. Also with due these learning imparted to the students, some form of scrutiny must also be combined with it, in order to keep a track of the progress of the student to realize how much did the child understand.
The no-detention policy was introduced here as a part of the Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) under the Right to Education Act (RTE) in 2010. Under this policy students up to class 8 are automatically promoted without the fact that they must be held back even if they do not get a passing grade, but does implementing this policy actually help the child in the long run?
What Is the No-Detention Policy?
The no-detention policy in education (NDP) is a policy under the Right to Education Act, which deems that no student should be failed or barred from school until they complete their elementary education. This covers classes 1 through 8. It means that children will inevitably be promoted to the next class. No examinations are conducted for elementary school. Students are assessed through CCE (a process of Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation).
As per the 86th amendment to the RTE (Right to Education Act), all children between the ages of six to fourteen have the right to full-time education of acceptable and equitable quality. The no-detention policy’s aim is to reduce the number of out-of-school children by giving them basic education in a safe environment. The aim is to provide education without damaging students’ self-esteem and to reduce the social stigma that is associated with failure.
Pros of the No-Detention Policy
There are some key merits associated with the NDP. Here are the no-detention policy’s advantages as mentioned below:
1. Increase in Student Enrolment
The NDP allows children to learn fundamentals and take a keen interest in studies without the fear of failing. This makes sure that the number of children who are enrolled in school will certainly improve, especially amongst female students. Along with the government’s mid-day meal system, the overall enrolment of children, especially in rural India, has seen a significant improvement.
2. Children Might Remain in School Long Enough to Earn a Sustainable Livelihood
Middle school from 5th to 8th grade can be very crucial in the journey of learning. The policy of no detention till class 8 enables students to get through these important years and it can assist them in finishing their education. This helps them develop skills that can help them find sustainable employment.
3. Encouragement to Learn Regional Languages & Vocational Skills
The NDP helps to bring in the focus on learning regional languages and vocational skills. Periodic evaluations are conducted for children with a keen focus on their regional language as well as some vocational skill development. Points accrued can be accumulated and used against fee waivers while pursuing a diploma in some vocational skill.
Cons of the No-Detention Policy
The NDP, with all its alluring merits, also has its flaws:
1. Impact on the Standard of Education
The standard of education can be negatively impacted because there is no consequence of misbehaviour or poor learning. This means that students can, at will, refuse to study or work on improving a skill. Consequently, this could mean that a lack of quality education in villages and rural India will push children towards a very bleak future.
2. Hard Work is Not Sufficiently Rewarded
Not having an assessment at the end of the year lets students have a half-hearted attitude towards education. On the other hand, children who do work hard and learn well are not rewarded for continuing down a winning path. The system makes no distinction between an average student and a good one, and this could deter earnest students.
3. Teachers Seem Apathetic to Learning Issues
Since the NDP allows children to graduate even with minimal effort, teachers and the education department probably may not make sufficient efforts to guide weak children. The teacher’s training programs in India have not taken into account the effort that needs to be made by the teachers.
4. Unclear Future for Students
If the quality of education becomes uncertain, then the economic independence of today’s children becomes questionable too. Children from poor economic backgrounds without proper education or skill will suffer to make a livelihood. Children from economically strong backgrounds do not stand a better chance either because they are used to a pressure-free environment and crumble when they are forced to put in an effort for grade 9 examinations.
5. Impact on Women Empowerment Programs
The girl child in India is already languishing from a lack of quality education. Programs that enable women empowerment will become directionless without girl children being properly educated.
6. No Value for Academic Outcomes
Without a proper system of grading and assessing students, children may not understand the value of working hard and acquiring knowledge. The academic outcome in schools will drop considerably.
Aggregating, we can say that rather than detaining a child for academic reasons we can find a specific skill set of the user and prepare a child on that. Needless to say, improving learning outcomes is the need of the hour. The government must focus on and improve the school education system and not punish the students for the shortfalls in the system.
We should work on shifting the academic system from being more academic centric to skill-centric. Also, the fear of examinations hurts a child’s developmental plans and does long-term damage which shouldn’t be the case after all its children who are the future of our nation!
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