At CII conclave, experts discuss ways to raise standards of education

A conclave on school excellence was organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Northern Region at its headquarters in Chandigarh on Wednesday.

Addressing a cross section of stakeholders such as school principals and teachers, representatives from the industry and NGOs from the north, Upkar Singh, DPI Schools, Chandigarh Administration, said, "Imparting a good quality of education to all the children of the country is the biggest challenge India is facing today".

Singh said that the administration is taking initiatives to enroll underprivileged students like mobilisation schemes, mid day meals, exposure visits, provision of uniforms, textbooks and scholarships.

Talking about the status of school education in Punjab, Hussan Lal, Secretary Education, Government of Punjab, said, "To promote primary and upper primary education in Punjab, we are aggressively opening Adarsh Schools in rural areas of Punjab with Public Private Partnership (PPP), under which 24 schools are operational already. ".

Mr Sameer Goel, Chairman, CII Chandigarh Council, raised the issue of gaps between the industry requirements and school curriculum. He felt that the classroom is not changing as rapidly as the workplace. "Schools will have to train their students to become leaders in industry," he opined.

According to A.K. Sharma, former Director, NCERT, there are various solutions to the problems faced by the Indian system of education, which includes vocationalisation of education, focus on teachers' training and promotion of open schooling through the use of e-learning practices.

Rajender Guleria, co-chairman, Special Task Force on Skills and Education, CII NR, mooted the idea of private school teachers sharing the best practices of their schools with government school teachers. He also suggested that each private school should adopt one government school for the purpose.

The conclavem which was attended by over 100 participants witnessed talks by Vijay Chadda, CEO, Bharti Foundation, Bipin Bhadran, COO and Director, Education Design Architecture, Winston Gomez, principal, Ambassador School, Julian Egbert, principal, O P Jindal Modern School, Hisar and P C Sharma, principal, Kendriya Vidyalaya OCF, Chandigarh.

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