Published: 07th October 2022
Merger of Delhi schools leading to deterioration in quality of education, say activists, parents
Additionally, the kids have to struggle for basic amenities on the school campuses like — drinking water, and sports equipment
Criticising the education model of the Delhi government, the Joint Forum for Movement on Education (JFME) claimed that hundreds of government schools had been merged in Delhi.
Addressing a press conference at the Press Club of India on Thursday, October 6, JFME raised several issues resulting from the merger of schools.
According to the forum, after the announcement of the draft of the National Education Policy in 2020, the AAP-led Delhi Government began the process of merging 92 schools. Thirteen government schools were merged in January 2022 and thirty-two schools were merged in April, said Sharda Dikshit, Joint Secretary, All India Save Education Committee (Delhi).
Education quality impacted, livelihood threatened
The speakers stated that the merger of schools had directly affected the educational quality of the school and threatened the livelihood of thousands of guest teachers. Dharmapal (41), a parent whose children's education was affected after the merger, said, "There are no proper arrangements for sitting and classrooms usually remain overcrowded which directly affects them to focus on their study."
Additionally, the kids have to struggle for basic amenities on the school campuses like — drinking water, and sports equipment. The JFME said in a statement that Shaheed Amirchand Sarvodaya Co-Ed School on Shyamnath Marg, catering to 2,000 students, has been merged with Shaheed Bal Mukund Sarvodaya Co-ed School, on Shankaracharya Marg, which already had 2,500 students, after misleading the parents. "Overcrowding and indiscipline has increased to such an extent that many parents have had to pull out their daughters," said Nandita Narain, Chairman of JFME.
Where is the problem most acute?
The forum also alleged that in North East Delhi, the situation is so impaired that classes are being held in two shifts. And even in this short period, the focus is more on the happiness curriculum, the Deshbhakti curriculum instead of the academic study.
Professor Anita Aggarwal alleged that there is also pressure on government teachers not to speak about this issue otherwise they will have to face backlash from the higher authorities. The forum said that not only the Delhi Government but the Municipal corporation also merged or closed their schools, "Both MCD and Delhi government began the process of implementing closure, merger, as outlined in the NEP 2020, page 28, clause 7.2, which has led to more overcrowding and dropouts." added JFME in a statement.