In the Beginning .
In ancient times India had the Gurukula system of education in which anyone who wished to study went to a teacher’s house and requested to be system taught.
If accepted as a student by the guru he would then stay at the guru’s place and help in all activities at home.
This not only created a strong tie between the teacher and the student but also taught the student everything about running a house.
The guru taught everything the child wanted to learn from Sanskrit to the holy scriptures and from Mathematics to Metaphysics.
The student stayed as long as she wished and until the guru felt that he had taught everything he could teach.
All learning was closely linked to nature and to life and not confined to memorizing some information.
The modern school system was brought to India including .
the English language originally by Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay in the 1830s.
The curriculum was confined to “modern” subjects such as science and mathematics and subjects like metaphysics and philosophy were considered unnecessary.
Teaching was confined to classrooms and the link with nature was broken as also the close relationship between the teacher and the student.
The School System
India is divided into 28 states and 7 so-called “Union Territories”.
The states have their own elected governments while the Union Territories are ruled directly by the Government of India.
with the President of India appointing an administrator for each Union Territory.
As per the constitution of India, school education was originally a state subject that is.
the states had complete authority on deciding policies and implementing them.
The role of the Government of India (GoI) was limited to coordination and deciding on the standards of higher education.
This was changed with a constitutional amendment in 1976 so that education now comes in the so-called concurrent list.
That is school education policies and programmers are suggested at.
the national level by the GoI though the state governments have a lot of freedom in implementing programmes.
Policies are announced at the national level periodically.
The Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) set up in 1935, continues to play.
a lead role in the evolution and monitoring of educational policies and programmes
In addition to the above there are a relatively small number of schools that follow foreign curricula such as the so-called Senior Cambridge.
though this was largely superseded by the ICSE stream elsewhere.
Some of these schools also offer the students the opportunity to sit for the ICSE examinations.
These are usually very expensive residential schools where some of the Indians working abroad send their children.
They normally have fabulous infrastructure low student-teacher ratio and very few students.
Many of them have teachers from abroad.
There are also other exclusive schools such as the Doon School in Dehradun that take in a small number of students and charge exorbitant fees.
Also read : How to school education rankings.
State Schools .
Each state in the country has its own Department of Education that runs its own school system with its own textbooks and evaluation system.
As mentioned earlier, the curriculum pedagogy and evaluation method are largely decided by the SCERT in the state, following
the national guidelines prescribed by the NCERT.
The Case of Kerala system.
The state of Kerala, a small state in the South Western coast of India.
has been different from the rest of the country in many ways for the last few decades. It has for instance
the highest literacy rate among all states, and was declared the first fully literate state about a decade back.
Life expectancy both male and female is very high close to that of the developed world.
Other parameters such as fertility rate infant and child mortality are among the best in the country if not the best.