New Education Policy 2020: Medium of instruction to be mother tongue till Class 5

"I am confident that this will be welcomed by entire society and nation as well as the world's educators," Javadekar said in a press meet.

Published: 29th July 2020 05:46 PM  |   Last Updated: 29th July 2020 07:31 PM   |  A+A-

Union Ministers Prakash Javadekar and Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank L during a press conference in New Delhi

Union Ministers Prakash Javadekar and Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank L during a press conference in New Delhi. (Photo | Shekhar Yadav, EPS)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the New Education Policy — a vision document to guide India's education blueprint for coming years - giving closure to an exercise that had begun in the first tenure of the Narendra Modi government.

The approval of the nearlyly 400-page document paves the way for the restructuring of school education from the current 10+2 model to 5+3+3+4 covering ages 3-18 and renaming the Union Ministry of Human Resources Development to Education Ministry.

The NEP will also facilitate the establishment of a central regulatory body for all school boards, called the National Assessment Centre to ensure uniform education levels across the country.

The government has also planned to introduce vocational training for school children beginning class 6 including internships and reducing textbooks to core concepts with greater emphasis on experiential learning.

ALSO READ | Union Cabinet renames MHRD as Ministry of Education, approves new NEP

In higher education, the NEP will allow multiple entry and exit options in the bachelor’s programme, multi-disciplinary courses, the option of 3 or 4 years for UG courses, and discontinuation of M Phil programme.

“The changes we are proposing in the education sector through the NEP will bring not only incremental but transformational changes in the field,” said Union HRD minister Ramesh Pokhariyal Nishank.

School children, through the policy, will be given increased flexibility and choice of subjects to study, particularly in secondary school - including subjects in physical education, the arts and crafts, and vocational skills.


Also, there will be no hard separation among ‘curricular’, ‘extracurricular’, or ‘co-curricular’, among ‘arts’, ‘humanities’, and ‘sciences’, or between ‘vocational’ or ‘academic’ streams.

Wherever possible, the medium of instruction until at least Grade 5, but preferably till Grade 8 and beyond, will be the mother tongue or local language, says the new policy which replaces the earlier policy adopted in 1986 and modified in 1992.

The NEP also says that textbooks will include knowledge from ancient India to modern India as well as future aspirations and Indian Knowledge Systems, including tribal knowledge and indigenous and traditional ways of learning, will be covered.

Also, all students will take school examinations in grades 3, 5, and 8 also, which will test the achievement of basic learning outcomes and application of knowledge in real-life situations. Board exams for grades 10 and 12, on the other hand, will be made “easier”, as they will test primarily core capacities or competencies rather than months of coaching or memorization.

In the higher education sector, UGC, AICTE and the National Council for Teacher’s Education will be merged into a single higher education commission.

The NEP that finally got the Cabinet approval has been built on two draft versions prepared by committees under TSR Subramanian and K Kasturirangan.

New Education Policy 2020 in a nutshell

  • NEP aims for universalization of education from pre-school to secondary level with 100% gross enrolment ratio in school education by 2030
  • Aims to bring 2 crore out of school children back into the mainstream
  • New 5+3+3+4 school curriculum with 12 years of schooling and 3 years of Anganwadi or pre-schooling
  • Emphasis on foundational literacy and numeracy, no rigid separation between academic streams, extracurricular, vocational streams in schools; vocational education to start  from Class 6 with internships
  • Teaching up to at least grade 5 to be in mother tongue or regional language
  • Report cards will be a comprehensive report on skills and capabilities instead of just marks and statements
  • GER in colleges to be raised to 50% by 2035; 3.5 crore seats to be added in higher education
  • Higher education curriculum to have flexibility of subjects
Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

  • SJ

    Medium of Instruction should be English where possible and in Mother Tounge if English is not possible. This is what it should have been. It's completely impractical to have medium of instruction anything else other than English and not sure what is the purpose behind this...This is so contradictory to our global existence..
    15 days ago reply
    • Pranjal Sarma

      Its not necessary that you become an English scholar if you studied in English medium schools. I myself have studied in vernacular medium and we got the feel of English only from 6th standard. Moreover
      15 days ago reply
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp