February 26, 2014, 1:02 pm
CBSE has introduced various vocational courses for Std XI students so that they can get a head start in the careers of their choice.
Come 2014-15 and your child could pick theatre, legal studies or gender studies as an elective, in a departure from run-of-the-mill courses. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is offering the subjects at the Std XI-XII level following a pilot run in select schools last year. Among other subjects available to senior secondary students are NCC, human rights and the unique Knowledge Traditions and Practices of India which combines various disciplines of study. For middle school, the board is offering Chinese language, the pilot run of which is under way in 25 schools at present.
The first batch will take their board exams in these subjects in March 2015. Theatre studies is now going to be offered in all schools after their pilot run on first-come-first-served basis in 2013-14. "Theatre can also play an important role in reinforcing and furthering the learning of other academic subjects which are taught in conventional ways," said CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi. "It concretizes issues that would otherwise remain abstract and difficult for children to grasp. It puts life back into bookish learning."
A CBSE circular regarding the course mentioned that the pilot run "received an overwhelming response from educationists and the teaching community all over India". The circular added that "it aims to engage students with a sense of exploration and discovery while highlighting the concepts and major achievements in various disciplines of knowledge".
Availability of qualified teachers determines which course the school chooses. Since most of the courses are pretty basic in nature, it is not big challenge to find teachers for them. A school principal said, "There are people in city which run integrated set ups, with classes right from nursery until post-graduation. They can always get their university level teachers once or twice a week to teach these vocational courses without having to shell out a lot of money. But for stand-alone schools, this becomes a tough task hence we opt for courses for which we can manage within our staff itself."
A PREVIEW BEFORE THE BIG CHOICE
* CBSE introduces new courses for students in Std XI
* These vocational courses help students get a sense of other career options
* In Nagpur many schools offering at least one vocational course
* Demand for such courses is picking up in the city
* CBSE’s aim is to create awareness about law, administration of justice, need for equality of opportunity and have an understanding of the history of gender and division of labour