Right to Education (Amendment) Act, 2019.

Right to Education (Amendment) Act, 2019

Right to Education (Amendment) Act, 2019

Indian Parliament has amended the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 on January 10, 2019. The Bill seeks to amend the Right to Education (RTE) Act to abolish the “no-detention” policy in schools, under this provision of the Act (RTE - 2009), no student can be detained up to class VIII.
The Act may now be called the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Act, 2019. However the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 (hereinafter referred to as the principal Act).

The Act shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

Important Terms
No detention policy, constitutional amendment, elementary education, Principal Act, Ministry of Law and Justice (Legislative Department), assent of the President, Official Gazette, TSR Subramanian committee, Central Advisory Board of Education.

The Act has Substituted new section (s) for section 16 and Section 38 of the Principal Act, and made the provisions for Examination and holding back students in certain cases -

Amendment of section 16 of the Principal Act
In section 16 of the principal Act, these sub-sections shall be added namely-

  • 16 (1) There shall be a regular examination in the fifth class and in the eighth class at the end of every academic year.
  •  (2) If a child fails in the examination referred to in sub-section (1), he shall be given additional instruction and granted opportunity for re-examination within a period of two months from the date of declaration of the result.
  • (3) The appropriate Government may allow schools to hold back a child in the fifth class or in the eighth class or in both classes, in such manner and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed, if he fails in the re-examination referred to in sub-section (2).
Provided that the appropriate Government may decide not to hold back a child in any class till the completion of elementary education.
  • (4) No child shall be expelled from a school till the completion of elementary education.

Amendment of section 38 of the Principal Act
In section 38 of the principal Act, in sub-section (2), after clause (f), the following clause shall be inserted, namely:—

(fa) the manner and the conditions subject to which a child may be held back under sub-section (3) of section 16;”.

See also
What is Right to Education (RTE) Act - 2009 ?
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 (the Act) provides for free and compulsory education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years. You can find more information about RTE- 2009 here.

What is no detention policy?
According to this provision “no child admitted in a school shall be held back in any class”. This translates into automatic promotions to the next class every year until Class VII. Instead of exams, schools are supposed to hold Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluations (CCE) for every child.

Need for this amendment 
The principal Act had contained no detention policy, Several States and School have criticized this provision claiming that it compromises with the quality of basic education and kills its competency at School level.

Many States assumed it as a reason of high failure and dropouts in classes 9 and 10.

The TSR Subramanian committee on new education policy, has also suggested the abolition of ‘no detention’ policy after Class V when child becomes 11 years old. It had recommended restoration of detention provision subjects to remedial coaching and at least two extra chances to each student to prove his capability in order to move to a higher class.

A sub-committee of the Central Advisory Board of Education also monitored the issue closely and strongly recommended a provisional detention clause at Classes V and VIII. In 2013.

A parliamentary panel had also asked the ministry to ‘review’ its “policy of automatic promotion up to Class VIII”.