This policy aims to transform India into a vibrant knowledge society making both school and college education more holistic, flexible, multidisciplinary, suited to 21st century needs and aimed at bringing out the unique capabilities of each student.
The salient features of the policy are as follows
Ensure Universal Access at All Levels of schooling from pre-primary school to Grade 12
NEP 2020 aims to achieve 100% Gross Enrollment Ratio in school education by 2030.
Early Childhood Care Education
NEP 2020 emphasises on the criticality of the early years to ensure quality early childhood care and education for all children between 3-6 years by 2025. The children in the ages of 3-5 will be catered to by the current system of anganwadis and pre-schools, and age 5-6 will be included with the schooling system in a seamless integrated manner.
New Curricular and Pedagogical Structure
With emphasis on Early Childhood Care and Education, the 10+2 structure of school curricula is to be replaced by a 5+3+3+4 curricular structure corresponding to ages 3-8, 8-11, 11-14, and 14-18 years respectively.
The new system will have 12 years of schooling with three years of Anganwadi/ pre schooling.
The new system will cover four stages:
* Foundational Stage (in two parts, that is, 3 years of Anganwadi/pre-school + 2 years in primary school in Grades 1-2; both together covering ages 3-8),
* Preparatory Stage (Grades 3-5, covering ages 8-11)
* Middle Stage (Grades 6-8, covering ages 11-14), and
* Secondary Stage (Grades 9-12 in two phases, i.e., 9 and 10 in the first and 11 and 12 in the second, covering ages 14-18).
Students will have increased flexibility and choice of subjects so that they choose their own paths according to their talents and interests. There will be no rigid separations between arts and sciences, between curricular and extra-curricular activities, between vocational and academic streams. The objective is to give equal emphasis on all subjects-science, social sciences, art, languages, sports, mathematics – with integration of vocational and academic streams in school.
Multilingualism and the power of language
The medium of instruction until at least Grade 5, but preferably till Grade 8 and beyond, will be the home language/ mother tongue /local language/regional language.
Sanskrit will be offered at all levels of school and higher education as an important, enriching option for students, including as an option in the three-language formula. Other classical languages and literatures of India, including Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Odia, Pali, Persian, and Prakrit, will also be widely available in schools as options for students.
Foreign languages, such as Korean, Japanese, Thai, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian, will also be offered at the secondary level.
Indian Sign Language (ISL) will be standardized across the country, and National and State curriculum materials developed, for use by students with hearing impairment.
Board exams for Grades 10 and 12 will be continued, but be reformed to eliminate the need for taking coaching classes. Board exams will be redesigned to encourage holistic development; and will also be made ‘easier’, by testing core capacities/competencies.
All students will be allowed to take Board Exams on up to two occasions during any given school year, one main examination and one for improvement, if desired.
All students will take school
examinations in Grades 3, 5, and 8 which will be conducted by the appropriate authority.
A new National Assessment Centre,
PARAKH (Performance Assessment, Review, and Analysis of Knowledge for Holistic Development), will be set up as a standard-setting body for setting norms, standards, and guidelines for student assessment and evaluation for all recognized school boards of India.
Every State/District will be encouraged to establish
“Bal Bhavans” as a special daytime boarding school, to participate in art-related, career-related, and play-related activities.
Teacher recruitment and career path
Teachers will be recruited through robust, transparent processes. Promotions will be merit-based, and a mechanism for multi-source periodic performance appraisals will be put in place. Progression paths to become educational administrators or teacher educators will be available for the teachers.
By 2025, at least 50% of learners through the school and higher education system shall have exposure to vocational education. Beginning with vocational exposure at early ages in middle and secondary school, quality vocational education will be integrated smoothly into higher education.
Increase GER in higher education to reach at least 50% by 2035.
The aim will be to increase the Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education including vocational education from 26.3% (2018) to 50% by 2035.
To provide multi-disciplinary holistic education at the undergraduate level for integrated, rigorous exposure to science, arts, humanities, mathematics and professional fields having imaginative and flexible curricular structures, creative combinations of study, integration of vocational education and multiple entry/exit points.
undergraduate degree will be of either 3 or 4-year duration, with multiple exit options within this period, with appropriate certifications – a certificate after completing 1 year in a discipline or field including vocational and professional areas, or a diploma after 2 years of study, or a Bachelor’s degree after a 3-year programme.
Academic Bank of Credit (ABC) shall be established which would digitally store the academic credits earned from various recognized HEIs so that the degrees from an HEI can be awarded taking into account credits earned.
Model public universities for holistic and multidisciplinary education, Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities (
MERUs) will be set up and will aim to attain the highest standards for multidisciplinary education across India.
Universities and colleges will set up high-quality support centres and will be given adequate funds and academic resources to encourage and support students from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Professional academic and career counselling will be available to all students, as well as counsellors to ensure physical, psychological and emotional well-being.
National ResearchFoundation (NRF)
A new entity will be set up to catalyze and expand research and innovation across the country. The NRF will competitively fund research in all disciplines.
Financial support for students
Efforts will be made to incentivize the merit of students belonging to SC, ST, OBC, and other SEDGs. The National Scholarship Portal will be expanded to support, foster, and track the progress of students receiving scholarships. Private HEIs will be encouraged to offer larger numbers of free ships and scholarships to their students.
Open and distance learning will be expanded, thereby playing a significant role in increasing the Gross Enrolment Ratio to 50%.
Motivated, Energized, and Capable Faculty
NEP 2020 recognises that the success of higher education institutions is the quality and engagement of its faculty. HEIs will have clearly defined, independent, and transparent processes and criteria for faculty recruitment. Faculty not delivering on basic norms will be held accountable.
Effective Governance and leadership in HEIs
Through a suitable system of graded accreditation and graded autonomy, and in a phased manner over a period of 15 years, all HEIs in India will aim to become independent self-governing institutions pursuing innovation and excellence.
There will be a single overarching umbrella body for promotion of higher education- the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI)- with independent bodies for standard setting – the General Education Council; funding-Higher Education Grants Council (HEGC); accreditation- National Accreditation Council (NAC); and regulation- National Higher Education Regulatory Council (NHERC).
The 4-year integrated stage-specific, subject- specific Bachelor of Education offered at multidisciplinary institutions would be the way forward. By 2030, the minimum degree qualification for teaching will be a 4-year integrated B.Ed. degree.
All professional education will be an integral part of the higher education system. Stand-alone technical universities, health science universities, legal and agricultural universities, or institutions in these or other fields, will aim to become multi-disciplinary institutions.
Technology in Education
An autonomous body, the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), will be created to provide a platform for the free exchange of ideas on the use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration.
Online Education and Digital Education
A comprehensive set of recommendations for promoting online education consequent in the recent rise in epidemics and pandemics in order to ensure preparedness with alternative modes of quality education whenever and wherever traditional and in-person modes of education are not possible, has been covered.
The policy aims to achieve 100% youth and adult literacy by 2030.
Promotion of Indian languages
More HEIs, and more programmes in higher education, will use the mother tongue/local language as a medium of instruction, and/or offer programmes bilingually.
An Indian Institute of Translation and Interpretation (IITI) will be established. Sanskrit and all Indian language institutes and departments across the country will be significantly strengthened.
All education institutions will be held to similar standards of audit and disclosure as a ‘not for profit’ entity. The Centre and the States will work together to increase the public investment in Education sector to reach 6% of GDP at the earliest.