Life skills, value-based education in coming years: Javadekar

New Delhi: Not just academics, the emphasis in coming years will be on teaching young students life skills and “experiential learning” in schools, Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Wednesday.

Attending the 10th Foundation Day of the Foundation for Restoration of National Values (FRNV)– a non-governmental organisation — here, the Minister said that books were not sufficient to make good citizens and that it was also family’s responsibility to instil civic sense among the children.

“There is no dearth of educated illiterates in our country… Where is the teaching of life skills and creative thinking?” the HRD Minister said.

He said when the ministry sought to know of the reasons behind this learning gap, it found that children were already overburdened with the syllabus and had no time for anything else. “To correct that the government has decided to halve the syllabus.”

“We will halve the syllabus in the coming year and the year next to that. We have already received 37,000 suggestions from parents, teachers and other experts on it.

We are preparing a curriculum which will include value-based education, experiential learning and life skills education,” Javadekar said.

FRNV president E. Sreedharan pointed out that except few missionary-run schools, “80 per cent of the government schools do not have anything like a ‘model education'”.

“We have requested the government to prepare a syllabus so that children are exposed to the values of this country for at least an hour or two in schools,” said Sreedharan, who is currently the Principal Advisor to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation and is also known as the “Metro Man”.