The Union Government has launched the NIPUN Bharat Scheme, which will focus on strengthening early-stage schoolchildren’s basic reading, numeracy, and comprehension. NIPUN stands for ‘National Initiative for Proficiency in Reading with Understanding and Numeracy’. The scheme aims to provide an ‘enabling environment to ensure the universal acquisition of foundational literacy and numeracy, so that every child achieves the desired learning competencies in reading, writing, and numeracy by the end of Grade 3, by 2026-27.
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Implementation of NIPUN Scheme
The implementation will begin in a five-tier mechanism by the school departments across national, state, district, block, and school levels in all states and union territories. As per the Union Education Ministry, NIPUN Bharat will be a part of the flagship school education program, Samagra Shiksha.
ASER’s Findings and Research
According to the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) released by education non-profit Pratham, foundational learning has been a constant drawback in Indian schools. The report also states that Indian students at the elementary level cannot read, understand or do basic arithmetic. Foundational learning was also equally emphasized in the new National Education Policy, which got approval in July last year but is yet to be rolled out.
The ASER findings released in January 2020 also state that nearly 25% of school-going children in the four-eight age group do not have age-appropriate cognitive and numeracy skills, which results in a massive learning deficit.
Additionally, only 37.4% of children under the age of 6 years can identify at least letters and alphabets and only 25.6% can perform additions. In addition to this, only 34.8% of children in Class II can read a text meant for those enrolled in classes below them. In Class III, only 50.8% can read texts meant for students two levels below them.
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This was all about the NIPUN Bharat Scheme launched by the Union Government. This scheme will essentially enhance the level of foundational learning in our country. We hope you found this to be informative. For more such educational content, stay connected with Leverage Edu on LinkedIn, Quora, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.