THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The ‘Kerala Perspective Plan 2030’ of the State Planning Board is a violation of constitutional provision of free and compulsory education, according to a document prepared in the run-up to the ‘4th International Congress On Kerala Studies’ to be held next month.
The document titled ‘Kerala Development Agenda,’ prepared by the AKG Centre for Study and Research here, has severely criticised the approaches of the Planning Board and the state government in the state’s education sector.
“The ‘Kerala Perspective Plan 2030’ of the Planning Board has curiously put forward the theory that the issues plaguing the education sector can be addressed by further commercialising the education sector. Instead of ensuring people’s participation, the Planning Board is attempting to replicate models from countries such as Finland and has also encouraged a ‘Common Comprehensive School System’ involving private unaided schools. “At a time when the number of students in schools in the state is on the decline, the state government has given sanction to CBSE, ICSE and International Schools without following any norms. Taking advantage of the situation, hundreds of unrecognised schools have also started functioning,” the document says.
It also points out that by tacitly approving the setting up of such schools, the government has paved the way for a sharp increase in the number of “uneconomic” schools. The document also points out that this development has resulted in the denial of the constitutionally-guaranteed right to free and compulsory education to people from the Dalit, Adivasi and fishermen communities. “Instead of organising widespread discussions on improving the quality of education in the state, the government has catered to corporate and casteist interests and thereby precipitated a crisis in the education sector,” the document says.
The document, among others on various issues, which form part of the ‘Kerala Development Agenda’, will be discussed threadbare during the 4th International Congress on Kerala Studies’ to be held on January 9 and 10.