Close male-female literacy gap: Pranab

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PRANABNew Delhi, September 5; President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday stressed on closing the gap in literacy levels of males and females, saying nothing is more saddening than the sight of a girl child being denied education.

“An inclusive approach is critical for achieving our developmental goals and a key objective is to close the male-female gap in literacy.

“Nothing is more saddening than the sight of a girl child being denied education. I take this opportunity to reiterate the motto that all for knowledge and knowledge for all,” the President said in New Delhi on the occasion of Teachers’ Day.

Underlining the need to fine tune course curriculum and adopt current methodologies to create relevant and effective approaches to teaching, he called for developing systems for continuous assessment of quality of education.

“I am confident that there is greater awareness in the entire teaching community of the need to fine tune the curriculum and adapt current methodologies to create relevant and effective approaches to teaching and learning.

“We need to create systems for continuous assessment of the quality of education and the outcome of our educational inputs,” he said.

Mr. Mukherjee said participation of the teaching community and parents would be essential in this process so that all stakeholders can ensure the desired results.

He presented national awards to 355 teachers from various states teaching in CBSE schools, Kendriya Vidyalayas, among others. 177 primary school teachers and 140 secondary school teachers were felicitated along with six teachers in Sanskrit and four teachers from Madrasas.

Each award consists of Rs. 25,000 cash, a certificate of merit and a silver medal.

Noting that a sound education system is the bedrock of an enlightened society, Mukherjee said the country cannot claim to have evolved into a developed society despite accomplishments unless citizens develop values and faithfulness to their spiritual and cultural heritage.

“Here, I see a pivotal role for teachers in re-setting the moral compass. Teachers have to help our youth imbibe the essential civilisation values of love for motherland, performance of duty, compassion for all, tolerance for pluralism, respect for women and honesty in life,” he said.

The President said India has to regain its primary position in the field of education on the global stage which it was known for during the period of Takshashila and Nalanda universities.

“There was a time when we had renowned seats of learning like Takshashila, Nalanda, Vikramashila, Valabhi, Somapura and Odantapuri. They attracted scholars from far and wide. The powerful minds who taught at such universities created an exalted position for our ancient education system.

“We have to regain our leadership position. We look towards teachers to guide the way,” he said.

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