Newly released textbooks by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) have revealed further cuts, including a chapter on the periodic table, democracy, environmental sustainability and sources of energy .
Class 10 students will no longer learn about these from their government-issue textbooks. Complete chapters on the subjects now stand deleted as a part of a ‘rationalization.’
Students, though, can still learn about these subjects, but only if they opt for the relevant subject in Class 11 and Class 12.
The removal of the theory of evolution from the Class 10 curriculum had caused significant concern earlier this year. Removal of content related to the Mughal Empire in India from class 12 textbooks earlier was also explained as part of the professional ‘rationalization’ exercise.
The NCERT says, just as earlier, that it was imperative to ‘reduce the load’ on students in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
‘Difficulty level, overlapping content, and content irrelevant in the present context’ are some of the reasons listed by NCERT for dropping these chapters from the curriculum.
Class 10 is the last year in which science is taught as a compulsory subject. This means only those students who elect to study chemistry in the final two years of education (before university) will learn about the periodic table.
More than 1,800 scientists and educators have written an open letter expressing concern over the rationalization exercise.
The government, though, has rejected all criticism as propaganda.
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