The Union HRD Minister Shri Prakash Javadekar launched a dedicated web portal ‘ShaGun’ for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan at New Delhi today. ‘ShaGun’ aims to capture and showcase innovations and progress in Elementary Education sector of India by continuous monitoring of the flagship scheme – Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA). The Union HRD Minister also unveiled the ‘Toolkit for Master Trainers in Preparing Teachers for Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs’, which has been prepared by World Bank in collaboration with Ministry of Human Resource Development.
On this occasion, the Union Minister also reiterated government’s commitment for improving the ‘Quality’ of Education. He said that in this direction Ministry of HRD will be codifying the learning outcome to set assessment standards for abilities with regards to comprehension, mathematics, language etc. and thus ensuring that “all children acquire at least the minimum levels of learning” from Class I to Class VIII under Right to Education Act, 2009.
Learning Outcomes are assessment standards indicating the expected levels of learning that children should achieve for that class. These outcomes can be used as check points to assess learning at different points of time. The learning outcomes would help teachers to understand the learning levels of children in their respective classes individually as well as collectively. Learning outcomes should be the point of reference for conducting achievement surveys. Hence it is necessary that the defined Learning Outcomes are also shared with parents and community at large. Ministry of HRD has uploaded draft document on its website in this regard to invite comments and suggestions through email address given. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Shri. Prakash Javadekar, Hon’ble Minister of Human Resource Development launching this e-initiative termed it as a global democratic forum enabled by technology which will give a peek in the Indian elementary education scenario and spread constructive lessons. He highlighted that this first-of-its kind platform will give due recognition to people, State governments, schools, teachers working towards improving Elementary Education across the country. The Union Minister further emphasized that ShaGun will help monitor progress of implementation of SSA by assessing performance of States and UTs on key parameters and thereby serve as a platform for the central government for effective planning and deliver on the promise of providing quality education to all.
ShaGun, which has been coined from the words ‘Shala’ meaning Schools and ‘Gunvatta’ meaning Quality, has been developed with a twin track approach.
First, is the Repository with an engaging interface that focuses on positive stories and developments in the field of School Education. In this repository, best practices will be documented in the form of videos, testimonials, case studies, and images, which will display state-level innovations and success stories that are driving improvements in performance under SSA. This repository has a decentralized management structure that enables State governments to choose, upload and manage their own content.
Secondly, it has an online monitoring module to measure state-level performance and progress against key educational indicators. It has been developed to collect and report data which will enable the government and administrators to track the efficiency with which SSA funds are being utilized and the results that this is delivering. SSA is a centrally sponsored scheme providing universal access to education to children in the age group of six to fourteen years of age.
Also, ‘Toolkit for Master Trainers in Preparing Teachers for Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs’ is the series of five training modules will provide the teachers with practical information on effective inclusion of CWSN and build those pedagogical practices that would address the needs of all children with special needs.
Shri Upendra Kushwaha, Hon’ble MoS, School Education and Literacy, MHRD, also addressed the gathering and appreciated ‘ShaGun’ as right step forward to understand the program implementation and evaluate the gap between policy and action, which will supplement the government decision making.
The event also saw live interaction with Mr Junaid Kamal Ahmad, Country Director, World Bank India through a video conference. He expressed his appreciation towards Ministry of Human Resource Development for introducing this platform that will allow for global learning from SSA lessons being shared.
Shri. Anil Swarup, Secretary, School Education and Literacy, GoI; Smt. Rina Ray, Additional Secretary, School Education, GoI; Smt. Shabnam Sinha, Lead Education Specialist, World Bank; senior policy makers and representatives of Autonomous Bodies such as NCTE, NCERT, CBSE and NUEPA, also attended the programme. The SSA ShaGun web portal can be accessed at http://ssashagun.nic.in.