Fault lines in government and the trajectory of education programmes: lessons from DPEP and SSA

Sharma, Rashmi (2018) Fault lines in government and the trajectory of education programmes: lessons from DPEP and SSA. Learning Curve (30). pp. 69-73.

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The District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) and the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) that followed it, have been critical programmes for elementary education in India. DPEP aimed at making primary education universal, while the goal of SSA was to make elementary education universal. Both sought to reduce gender and social inequities in education and improve learning levels. As these programmes progressed, they were pivotal not only in implementing policy, but also in creating it and changing institutional structure. In DPEP and SSA, new schools and supporting institutions were set up, new policies regarding teachers evolved, and pedagogic practices, i.e. textbooks, teaching methodology, student evaluation etc. were impacted. As an Indian Administrative Service officer, I was happy to work in the DPEP and SSA, because I was keenly interested in elementary education. But surprisingly, this experience led me back to a renewed interest in my core work: the working of government. As I collaborated with colleagues within and outside the government on pedagogic issues such as textbook writing, teacher training, student evaluation etc., various non-pedagogic ‘events’ took place, which eclipsed concerns about teaching and learning, and swept along our efforts in unexpected directions. It became clear to me that the quality of elementary education was at least as dependent on how the government worked, as it was on the curriculum, the quality of textbooks and teacher training and that government reforms were a necessary condition for the reform of education.

Item Type: Articles in APF Magazines
Authors: Sharma, Rashmi
Document Language:
Uncontrolled Keywords: Education, Elementary education, Early childhood education
Subjects: Social sciences > Education
Divisions: Azim Premji University > University Publications > Learning Curve
Full Text Status: Public
URI: http://publications.azimpremjiuniversity.edu.in/id/eprint/1186
Publisher URL: http://apfstatic.s3.ap-south-1.amazonaws.com/s3fs-...

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