Published On : Sat, Mar 12th, 2016

City schools of ICSE, IGCSE and CBSE Boards confused over mandatory Marathi teaching rule

State Education Minister Vinod Tawde
: Sanskrit Bharati a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh outfit succeeded in getting German removed as a third language from Centre-run Kendriya Vidyalayas (CBSE Board). The organization then wanted the Human Resources Development Ministry headed by Smriti Irani to implement the rule of teaching Sanskrit as third language instead of German in all CBSE-affiliated schools across the country.

In a new twist the State Education Minister Vinod Tawde said in the Legislative Assembly on March 11, 2016 that the State Government has decided to make teaching Marathi compulsory even in Non-state-board affiliated school across Maharashtra.

“We want all schools not affiliated with State Board across the State to teach Marathi to students from Standards I-VII,” said Tawde in reply to a question raised by Congress MLAs. “The resolution will be passed in the legislature and then sent to the Union government,” he said. The Non-state affiliated boards in the State include ICSE (Indian Certificate of Secondary Education), IGCSE (International General Certification of Secondary Education) and CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education).

Tawde added that those schools that do not comply with this will not be given Non-Objection Certificates (NOC) that they require every three years to run their school in the State. Apart from this, the Education Minister also made compulsory teaching history of Chhatrapati Shivaji in Non-State Board schools.

Some practical problems which Education Minister Vinod Tawde overlooked

Nagpur Today tried to speak to the Principals, Supervisors and Senior Teachers of ICSE (Indian Certificate of Secondary Education), IGCSE (International General Certification of Secondary Education) and CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) Boards run schools. Most of them displayed a classic phobia for the media. They simply refused to divulge anything to us not comment anything about the new rule.

While speaking to Nagpur Today on condition of anonymity, one very senior High School teacher said that they get students whose parents are in transferable jobs or positions. They prefer their children to study in their school since it is very favourable for their children. The uniforms, books, syllabus, fees, teaching methodology etc are same throughout India. Even if a student is brought to the school in the middle of the session from some school of any other state, he will be admitted and the student can continue his studies without with much difficulty.

However, making Marathi compulsory will cause problem to students coming from other states will have problems in catching up with the language. While elaborating her point, the Teacher said that if a student comes from Delhi (because his or her father was transferred to Nagpur) in Class Vth, he would have to study Marathi instead of Sanskrit he or she was learning in Delhi or any other state. Obviously the student will fail since he would not know the intricacies of the language which a student learns from IInd or IIIrd.

The students who move to other schools in other states (because of transfer of their parents will face problems in future too, since the student would have to study Sanskrit in schools in other states. The Students would have to catch-up with 2 or 3 years of the syllabus of Sanskrit to come in tune with the present class.

The teacher says this type of compulsion is draconian and should not be done. There should be a choice. Unless a parent intends to keep the student in the same school in the city till he passes out after Xth or XIIth standard.

Another Teacher who too spoke only on condition of anonymity to Nagpur Today said that the State Education Minister can make and implement any rule or law for the State Board run schools but should leave the schools of other boards alone. The schools of ICSE, IGCSE and CBSE Boards follow a very well researched syllabus, course material etc and follow a curriculum that is strictly adhered and followed by teachers thus making a student of better quality in many respects.

Another teacher while speaking to Nagpur Today on condition of anonymity said that the State Education Minister should make it optional and not compulsory. He is pushing the Marathi language affinity too far. Some of these political parties seem to be taking pride in promoting Marathi language and recommending that it be used at all functions even those outside the country, even when the speaker is fluent in English and now to be taught in schools in the state even if they are a non-state-board run schools.