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28th Sitting: Deliberation on the recommendations on Review of the Programme Initiatives towards improving the Quality of Education

Posted on :26 February 2020

Today, the House deliberated on the recommendations submitted by the Good Governance Committee (GGC) on the Review of the Programme Initiatives towards improving the Quality of Education.
In the 27th Sitting, the GGC Committee presented the review report to the House and submitted five issues for deliberation along with recommendations for consideration.
The Committee proposed the following recommendations to the government to;

·       Expedite the expansion of access to ECCD centres to attain 100% coverage before 2030;
·       Consider enhancing the Bhutan Education Blueprint’s target on ECCD coverage from 50% by 2024;

·       Give greater focus on the foundational level of education by ensuring adequate financial and human resources for the primary schools;

·       Revisit the current practice of school ranking system to ensure that its implementation does not deviate from its intended purpose;

·       Ensure adequate provision of facilities and tools for effective implementation of any new or revised curriculum; and  

·       Either explore reviving the erstwhile Centenary Institute of Education (CIE) or strengthen the existing REC to assume the responsibility of both designing and delivering of PD programmes. 

Acknowledging and supporting the committee’s recommendations, some members sought clarification on the provision of autonomy to some Primary schools and their performances, while others suggested the need to review the system of budget allocation to the schools to provide justifiable and adequate budget irrespective of the level of schools. 

Members also suggested for the discontinuation of the school ranking system as it was found to be unfair and de-motivated most principals and teachers of the low ranking schools. 

Supporting the provision of Professional Development programmes to teachers, some members recommended the inclusion of teachers of private schools into these programmes as well.

General recommendations were made on the necessity to: address the teacher shortage in rural areas; transfer teachers at a regular interval; and review Central Schools’ criteria for boarding admission. Some Members also shared general concerns on the reduction of admission age to Pre Primary from six to five; discontinuation of examinations from PP to Class III; the impact of discontinuation of classes on Saturdays amongst others.

Clarifying on the issues, the Committee pointed out that due to lack of proper education policy and act, inducing different policies cannot be controlled, therefore the Committee suggested that the review process on the education sector should be a continues process where the House will recommend the government as and when required.

The Committee also reported that the ministry is currently under the process of reviewing the overall Bhutan Education Blueprint and most of the concerns raised by the members including the committees may be addressed.  

Adopting the Committee’s proposal to the government to ensure timely orientation for teachers on curriculum and other support services to provide an adequate provision of facilities and tools for effective implementation of any new or revised, the House directed the Committee to re-deliberate on the remaining recommendations taking into consideration the suggestions and additional recommendations shared by the Members and prepare final recommendations for adoption.
 
Tomorrow, the House shall be on recess and the committees will carry out with the finalization of the recommendations

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