My title is: GS-2- Government Policies and Interventions | National Education Policy 2020

National Education Policy 2020

2020-08-01 | 5 minutes

Recently, the new National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 has been approved by the Cabinet, and the Ministry of HRD has been renamed as the Education Ministry.


  • The National Education Policy was framed for the first time in 1986 and was modified in 1992.
  • In January 2015, Ministry of HRD started the process of formulation of National Education Policy through the consultative process for holistic approach.
  • In October 2015, a Committee for Evolution of the New Education Policy headed by former Cabinet Secretary, T S R Subramanian, was constituted.
  • In May 2016, the Committee under the chairmanship of Late T S R Subramanian submitted its report.
  • In June 2017, Committee for the Draft Education Policy headed by Dr. K Kasturirangan was constituted.
  • On 31st May 2019, the Committee submitted its report to the ministry, which was later uploaded on the ministry website to invite suggestions from various stakeholders.
  • On 7th November 2019, the meeting of Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee of Human Resource Development took place.

Fig: Timeline of NEP 2020

Major Highlights of the new National Education Policy:

The new National Education policy is based on the foundational pillars of Access, Equity, Quality, Affordability and Accountability. It is also in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, i.e SDG-4, that seeks to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all by 2030. The following are the aims of this policy:

  • It aims to achieve 100% youth and adult literacy.
  • Ensuring Universal Access at all levels of school education- No one to be left behind.
  • Transforming India into a vibrant knowledge society and global knowledge superpower.

School Education:

  • To achieve 100% Gross Enrollment Ratio by 2030 in school education.
  • Replacement of 10+2 system with a new 5+3+3+4 curricular structure corresponding to ages 3-8, 8-11, 11-14 and 14-18 years respectively.
  • National Curricular and Pedagogical Framework for Early Childhood Care and Education (NCPFECCE) will be developed by NCERT for children up to 8 years.
  • Ministries of HRD, Women and Child Development, Health and Family Welfare and Tribal Affairs will jointly plan and implement the Early Childhood Care and Education.
  • A National Mission on Foundational Literacy and Numeracy is to be created by MHRD.
  • The states should prepare an implementation plan for attaining universal foundational literacy and numeracy in all primary schools for all learners by grade 3 by 2025.
  • Vocational education will start in schools from the 6th grade and will include internships.
  • NCERT will develop a new and comprehensive National Curricular Framework for School Education, NCFSE 2020-21.
  • Mother tongue/regional language/ local language as the medium of instruction at least till Grade 5, but preferably till Grade 8 and beyond.
  • Standardization of Indian Sign Language across the country.
  • 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.
  • Gender Inclusion Fund and Special Education Zones will be set up for disadvantaged regions and groups.

Must Read Article: Analysis of National Education Policy 2020

Higher Education:

  • To increase the Gross Enrolment Ratio in higher education from 26.3% (2018) to 50% by 2035.
  • 3.5 crore seats will be added in higher education.
  • It provides for four-year undergraduate degrees with multiple entry and exit options. E.g., Certificate for 1 year, Advanced Diploma for 2 years, Bachelor’s Degree after 3 years with Research after 4 years.
  • Abolishing of M.Phil degrees.
  • Setting up of Higher Education Commission of India (HECI) as a single overarching umbrella body for entire higher education, excluding medical and legal education.
  • There will be four independent verticals:
    • National Higher Education Regulatory Council (NHERC) for regulation
    • General Education Council (GEC) for setting standard
    • Higher Education Grants Council (HEGC) for funding
    • National Accreditation Council (NAC) for accreditation
  • The National Research Foundation will be created as an apex body for building research capacity across higher education.
  • The National Educational Technology Forum (NETF) will be created.
  • Phasing out of affiliation of colleges in the next 15 years and establishment of a stage-wise mechanism to provide graded autonomy to colleges.
  • Setting up of National Institute for Pali, Persian and Prakrit, Indian Insititute for Translation and Interpretation (IITI).

Teacher Education:

  • National Council for Teacher Education (NTCE) will develop a common National Professional Standards for Teachers (NPST) by 2022, in consultation with NCERT, SCERTs, teachers and expert organizations from across levels and regions.
  • State School Standards Authority (SSSA) will be set up independently by the States/UTs.
  • A new and comprehensive National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education, NCFTE 2021, will be formulated by the NCTE in consultation with NCERT for Teacher education.
  • 4 year integrated B.Ed degree will be made minimum degree qualification for teaching by 2030.
  • National Mission for Mentoring will be established, which will include outstanding seniors/retired faculty who are ready to provide short and long term mentoring support to university or college teachers.

The new National Education Policy has been designed after receiving various suggestions from 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats, 6600 Blocks, 600 ULBs, and 676 districts. Article 21A of the Indian Constitution aims at providing free and compulsory education for all children in the age group of 6 to 14 years, which is a Fundamental Right. Despite the progress in some areas, the education system in India needed major reforms. The new Education Policy is expected to address the challenges and shortcomings of the Indian Education System.