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Overview Of Right To Education Act, 2009 In Contemporary India

Standardizing Instruments of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) and united nation put forward the legal obligation and framework for the right to education. These instruments promote and facilitate the right of every person to enjoy and access to education of good quality, without discrimination or exclusion. Member states and the international community are the supporting witness of the normative action for accepting the right to education.

There is the duty of the government to fulfill their responsibility for providing both legal and political obligations in regards for providing education for all of good quality and execute and be vigilant for the implantation of more effectively education strategies.

To put an end to this disastrous and worrisome trend, the Government of India put forward the Right to free and Compulsory education (RTE) Act making education a basic and fundamental right of all the children in the age group of 6 to 14 years. The right to education is a universal entitlement to education.

This is recognized as a human right in International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights that includes right to free and compulsory education primary education for all with an commitment to make secondary education accessible to all, precisely by the progressive introduction of free and accessible secondary education as well as with to develop equitable access to higher education similarly by the progressive introduction of free higher education.

The Right to education also includes a duty to provide basic education for individuals who have not complete primary education. Apart from these access to education provisions, the right to education circumscribe the obligation to remove the discrimination at all the levels of the educational system also to fix the minimum standards and to improve the quality of education.

Historical Development:
In its scientific sense, education is the process by which society knowingly transmits its cumulated skills, knowledge and value from generation to generation. Education in the broadest sense is any experience or act that has developing effect on the mind, character or ability (physical) of an individual.

 "I beg to place the following resolution before the council for its consideration��.the state should accept in this country the same responsibility on regards to mass education that government of most civilized countries are already discharging. The well being millions upon millions of children who are waiting to be brought under the influence of education depend on it�.."

The above words are part of resolution which Gopal Krishna Gokhale used to move the imperial Legislative council on 18th March 1910for seeking provisions of "Free and Compulsory Primary education" in India. This initiative was not enacted; the central reason for this is lack of resources and enforcement.

In 1937 Mahatma Gandhi the father of our nation was compelled to give riveting call for universal education, as the situation was becoming worsen over the years. More recently "The right of children to free and compulsory education Act,2009"was passed on 26th august,2009. Except the state (which now become the union territory) Jammu and Kashmir it was extended to whole of India. According to the latest 77th round NSSO in January 2019 the literacy rate among the population with age 7 year and above was 77.7%.

There is great improvement although the level is still behind the average literacy rate of 84%. It was estimated by the scientists that if India would go with this pace it would take 2060 to achieve universal literacy. The fastest ever record was indicated in the 2001 census in the 1991-2001 decadal with the, literacy growth of 12.63%.

The educational system which India inherited at the time of independence was not only quantitatively small but also identify by striking gender and regional disparities. Only one of the three children enrolled in primary school. Hence the challenge was to to provide primary and elementary education within a set forth time.

Accordingly, by Article 45 of the Indian constitution there is universal education for all children in the 6-14 year age group. There is also specific obligation for economic and educational interests of the under privileged section of the population. But these provisions are still neglected and unfulfilled. An ambitious program named "Sarva Siksha Abhiyan" was seen as government commitment to ensure elementary education for all children aged 6-14 years.

By 86th amendment in December 2002 Free and compulsory education was made a fundamental right under article 21A of the Indian constitution. In bringing to this in the year 2005 'Right of children to free and compulsory education bill' is drafted. In august 2009 this was revised and became an act in august 2009, but was enforced from 1st April 2010. Large number of drop-out children and out-of the school children (around a crore in the beginning) will get benefited.

Right To Education Act, 2009

Article 21-A, which states that all children between the ages of six and fourteen have the fundamental right to free and compulsory education, was added to the Indian Constitution by the Constitution (Eighty-sixth Amendment) Act of 2002. Every child has the right to a full-time elementary education of satisfactory and equitable quality in a formal school that complies with certain fundamental norms and standards, according to the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009, which represents the consequential legislation anticipated under Article 21-A.

The RTE Act and Article 21-A both went into force on April 1, 2010. The words "free and compulsory" are part of the RTE Act's title. According to the definition of "free education," no child-aside from a child whose parents have allowed him or her to enrol in a school that is not financially supported by the relevant government-shall be required to pay any kind of fee, charge, or expense that might prevent him or her from pursuing and completing elementary education.

The term "compulsory education" imposes a duty on the relevant local and state governments to provide and guarantee elementary school enrollment, attendance, and completion for all children aged 6 to 14.

Issues and Challenges before RTE Act:

  1. Age cap 6-14 years why not 0-18 years
    Only kids between the ages of 6 to 14years of age are eligible for the rights under the law. Despite the fact that India has signed the U.N. charter, which explicitly specifies that free education should be made mandatory for all children up to the age of 18, it excludes younger children (under the age of 6) and older ones (14�18). Critics counter that while the next four years of adolescence are as crucial to a child's maturation process, the years from 0 to 6 are the most delicate and important in a child's development and that stopping at 14 means abandoning the task before it has even begun. For a person to live at least a minimally respectable life, education up to the age of 14 is in no way sufficient.
     
  2. RTE law excludes children with special needs (CWSN)

    Incorrectly referred to as children with special needs, the Right to Education Act of 2009 makes no provisions for providing education to children with disabilities (CWSN). Children with special needs make up the largest out-of-school population in India, despite the Right to Education Act of 2009's promise of ensuring universal access to education. The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which was ratified by India in October 2007, states that "State parties shall ensure that persons with disabilities are not excluded from the general education system on the basis of disability and that children with disabilities are not excluded from free and compulsory primary education or from secondary education on the basis of disability."
     
  3. Situation of low-income students in private schools

    Children from disadvantaged backgrounds can now attend private schools thanks to the RTE Act of 2009. But, the administrators of private schools pose the most problem. When these underprivileged kids enrolled in the private education the kids will abruptly exposed to a new quality of living.

    Then important questions like Will their teachers and classmates treat them equally and with respect? Will the poor youngsters' ability to handle this wills not be traumatising? arises. What about the additional costs of attending a private school, such as uniform, books, stationery, etc.?

    The likelihood is great that parents themselves would experience intimidation at the idea of enrolling their children in private schools. This is  about the private school's obstructionist, strategies to keep the underprivileged children out. As a result, the majority of private schools that accept underprivileged students are typically low-quality, low-budget institutions.
     
  4. Teachers are not enough trained

    Teachers are at the centre of RTE implementation, which aims to create a diverse and democratic classroom in which all students take part as equal partners. Our elementary school system already has a teacher shortage, and a sizable portion of its teacher's lack formal training. A major obstacle to the successful implementation of the RTE Act is the lack of properly educated teachers. A great need for qualified instructors required for better student-teacher ratio.

    It compelled several states to seek exemption from adhering to the qualifications norms during recruitment. As a result, unqualified persons were promoted to administer the educational system as para-teachers.
     
  5. Admission based on age, but no bridge course infrastructure

    Regardless of their level of learning, the Right to Education Act mandates that children be placed in classes according to their age, which is a beneficial move because it prevents the loss of years. But this leads to an odd circumstance where youngsters in the same class may have different learning needs. There is currently no provision for giving a bridging course to level the playing field for students in terms of learning. Therefore, in order to bring all pupils in a class up to the same level, flexible length training needs to be made essential for trailing children.
     

Benefits of RTE Act:

  1. Community Benefit
    Community development is ensured by education. It guarantees the nation's advancement. As a result, one benefit of the RTE ACT is that it ensures the growth of the community and the country as a whole.
     
  2. Ensure quality education

    One advantage of the RTE Act 2009 is that it guarantees quality education through its requirements since it ensures ongoing oversight of educational institutions. The Act, for instance, specifies, among other things, the ideal teacher-student ratio, the necessary facilities, and infrastructure. These rules make sure that kids receive only quality education.
     
  3. Educational equality

    The RTE Act of 2009 has the advantage of promoting equality in education. It mandates that all private institutions must allocate 25% of their seats to underprivileged and other child groups, so it gives everyone access to equal educational opportunities. The goal of the Act is to promote social integration in the classroom.
     
  4. Exterminate Poverty

    The fact that the RTE ACT is a tool for reducing poverty is one of its major advantages.
    The lack of educated youth in the nation is one of the key causes of poverty. Young people without a college degree are unable to find employment that pays well. Education can help people escape poverty and pursue fulfilling jobs.
     
  5. Absolute Intolerance for Discrimination

    The Right to Education Act of 2009 provisions places a strong emphasis on prohibiting student discrimination on the basis of caste, creed, or religion. This is a step in the right direction toward releasing the nation from social discrimination.

Conclusion
An excellent move in the correct direction is the RTE Act of 2009. The Act is acknowledged on a global scale. According to Sam Carlson (the education specialist for India at the World Bank), the RTE Act is the first piece of legislation in the entire world to place the government in charge of assuring enrollment, attendance, and completion. The children's education in the US and other countries is the duty of the parents.

Every generation looks up to the one behind them in the expectation that they would develop a nation that is superior to the one we currently have. Therefore, any nation's top priority should always be education that empowers the next generation. It is now widely acknowledged that only compulsory education, or more precisely, free obligatory primary education, allows for the national realization of the right to education.

However, the efforts to create an educational system in India with complete access, equality, and quality of education have not been successful due to widespread poverty and different prejudices in the population. Another cause for concern is the inability to control the dropout rates among the underprivileged communities.

References:
  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right_of_Children_to_Free_and_Compulsory_Education_Act,_2009
  2. http://educationindiajournal.org/home_art_avi.php?path=&id=185
  3. http://www.legalservicesindia.com/article/1925/Right-to-Education.html
  4. https://dsel.education.gov.in/rte
  5. https://socialissuesindia.wordpress.com/2020/07/17/rte-act-2009-anomalies-and-challenges/
  6. https://collegemarker.com/blogs/right-to-education-in-india-act/

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