oppn parties Playschools: Set Minimum Standards

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  • Former Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Akhtar proposes an Indo-Pak ODI series to raise funds for fighting coronavirus
  • Maharashtra government says many Tablighi Jamaat members who attended the Markaz and returned have gone into hiding
  • West Bengal government identifies hotspots in Kolkata and the rest of the state, inclined to extend the lockdown in those places only
  • Prime Minister Modi holds a video conference with floor leaders of opposition parties, hints at extending the lockdown
  • UP seals hotspots and makes masks mandatory
  • Masks made compulsory in Mumbai, violators will be arrested
  • ICMR says an infected person can infect 406 people in 30 days without social distancing and lockdown
  • Stock markets make a smart recovery. Sensex up by record 2476 points on global cues
  • Schools, colleges and shopping malls likely to remain closed for a further period of one month, says empowered group of ministers
  • PM Modi tells BJP workers that India is in for a long battle against the coronavirus and there is no scope to feel tired or defeated
  • PM Modi asks ministers to focus on exports and new areas and sectors
  • PM Modi asks ministers to prepare business continuity plan post the lifting of the lockdown
  • Corona cases in India cross 4000 and the death toll stands at 124
  • The government decides to double the testing of corona suspects from 10000 now to 20000 in the next three days
  • Flipkart assures employees that there will be no job or salary cuts due to the COVID-19 pandemic
COVID-19: 773 new cases and 32 deaths in the last 24 hours, reports the health ministry
oppn parties
Playschools: Set Minimum Standards

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2017-01-09 09:12:54

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
The government has decided to regulate the business of playschools – those institutions that admit children as young as 1 year in either the Montessori or other systems. It is thinking of fixing the minimum age for admissions to such schools at 3 years. It is true that some unscrupulous entrepreneurs have been cashing in on the fears of parents to prepare their children for admission into reputed schools. These parents are concerned that their child would be ‘left out’ if he or she is not admitted to playschool, as there is a misconception that these schools ‘prepare’ the child for admission to secondary schools. This misconception has in part been generated by some such schools ‘promising’ admission in reputed secondary schools.

But it is also true that playschools play an important role in the development of the child although it is debatable if 1 year olds should be admitted. The Montessori system of child development, as also the new ones that have come up like progressive education, multiple intelligence mapping, playway method, holistic learning, are all being followed to train the child in various ways like recognizing colours, shapes, sounds and alphabets. These schools also teach the child to mix with others of his or her age and react in given situations. Hence, their importance is not to be discounted.

The government’s efforts to regulate are laudable because in the absence of any regulatory framework, these schools are being started by all and sundry in every lane of towns and cities, some without any concern for the safety of the child. While the more reputed ones take care to have excellent premises, most others just make do with any hall partitioned into small, cramped classrooms. Absence of even small playgrounds is another area of concern. Then there is the need for qualified teachers. Most playschools just keep ‘minders’ instead of trained teachers to cut down on salaries. This can adversely affect child development.

The government must ensure that minimum standards are met by people wishing to start a playschool. These standards should specify the minimum educational qualification of person starting the school, requirement of space, appointment of trained teachers and the Principal, playground and equipment, toilets and medical and first-aid facilities. But the government must not interfere with the day to day working of these schools. Independence must be allowed if the minimum standards are met.