Most schools averse to diktat on NCERT books
A recent circular of the Director Education, Punjab, to all schools in the state, including private institutes, recommending only NCERT books for students has not gone down well with the management of most schools.
While a few schools said they were already using only NCERT books, which has best content and were easy on pocket, management of other institutes said the orders came too late and they had already tied up with private publishers and recommended their books to students.
The CBSE-affiliated Schools’ Association has reverted back to the Director Education and said, “We are shocked after receiving the circular, just before the beginning of new academic session. In the circular, it has been mentioned that books of private publishers are expensive and parents are against these. This seems to be an afterthought.”
The association further said, “We had sent orders to private publishers before mid-January and we received our orders on March 18. We were about to publish a list of books on our websites, a month before the commencement of session. The prescribed list includes books published by the NCERT / PSEB / CBSE as well as of private publishers and we cannot go back on our decision at this stage.”
Owner of five CBSE-affiliated schools not willing to go on record said, “The order of recommending only NCERT books is not justified because NCERT does not print all subjects and books for every grade. Every year, there is a shortage of NCERT books. Sometimes, NCERT books are not available throughout the academic session. Some books printed by private publishers are also very informative in content and are economical as per their number of pages/ paper quality. Private publishers also provide audio-visual aid along with e-content, which is very useful for students, especially during the lockdown.”
He said, “Most NCERT books got printed in 2006 and ever since these are only being reprinted without any revision. How can we in 2021 ask our students to go by the old content? They certainly need updated study material.”
Principal of Police DAV Public School Rashmi Vij said, “Our schools have been recommending books published by the DAV Society and we are doing this for years. Our books are more cost-effective than NCERT. Also, since NCERT is not publishing all books, we have to depend on private publishers as well. The orders of the Director Education have come too late. All this involves a lot of planning.”