Identifying the need to introduce character building and soft skills in academics, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), has proposed to start a three-year value education programme across its schools.
The CBSE made its decision after a recent workshop on similar lines. "In continuation to the orientation titled 'Value Education: Why, What and How', held at the Ramakrishna Mission, New Delhi on December 7 last year. The Awakened Citizen programme is to be implemented by the schools using their own teaching resources," said the circular on the board's website.
Facilitated by the Ramakrishna Mission, the Awakened Citizen programme will aim at equipping students with soft skills, character building techniques and other life tools. This will be a graded subject. Schools have to agree to implement the programme starting from academic year 2014-15 and run it for a minimum of three years.
The programme will consist of 16 modules of 40 minutes each every year. "We will start this year with class VII and extend the programme to class VIII and IX over the next three years. We also plan to extend the course to all classes eventually," said Piya Chakravarty of Ramakrishna Mission.
The cost of developing the programme, will be borne by the Ramakrishna Mission, New Delhi. Two teachers from the school will be trained over the next two months. "While we have enough resources to carry out the programme, it is best if the teachers connect to the students through the programme," said Chakravarty.
The programme is being extended to a pan-India level after several pilot projects in the capital. "We have also tested the programme and conducted an impact study in various cities. This is how we identified the need of such a programme to help students work towards developing faith in themselves," said Chakravarty.
An extensive performance audit of the programme will be conducted through visit to schools, interaction with the teachers and students and collection of data.