[lg policy] Will Tamil Nadu allow Navodaya Vidyalayas?

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Tue Mar 8 16:16:22 UTC 2016

Will TN allow Navodaya Vidyalayas?

Tamil Nadu is the only State that does not have a Navodaya Vidyalaya.

State reportedly opposed to the concept as it gives importance to Hindi in
the schools

The announcement in Union Budget 2016-17 that 62 new Jawahar Navodaya
Vidyalaya (JNV) schools will be opened in districts hitherto uncovered in
the country has raised the question whether Tamil Nadu will allow opening
of JNVs in the State now.

Twenty years after the introduction of JNVs, run by Navodaya Vidyalaya
Samiti (NVS) under the Union Ministry of Human Resource Development, Tamil
Nadu remains the only State which does not have a JNV, reportedly because
of the perception that importance is given to Hindi in these schools.

JNVs, renowned for quality education, provide residential education from
Class VI to Class VIII free of cost while a nominal fee of Rs. 200 is
charged from students in Class IX to Class XII. In the admission, which is
done through an entrance exam, 75 percent of seats are reserved for
children from rural areas, apart from reservations for children belonging
to SC and ST communities.

Many in the education sector opine that opening of JNVs is being prevented
in the State because of misconceptions about the language policy of JNVs.

C. Muthiah, Principal of Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV) Madurai, said importance
given to regional language in JNVs was better than KVs. “In KVs, learning
the regional language is not mandatory. However, in JNVs, students have to
learn the local language apart from Hindi and English,” he said.

“So when KVs, which mainly help Central government employees, are allowed,
then why not JNVs, which help rural children? All they have to do is to
allocate land,” Mr. Muthiah said.

The prospectus available on the NVS website says that the medium of
instruction will be in regional language up to Class VIII.

However, Prince Gajendra Babu, General Secretary of State Platform for
Common School System, rejected the idea of JNVs altogether, stating that it
went against the principles of equitable access for all to quality

“JNVs in a district may admit 50 to 100 children in a class and provide
high quality education. Do the other children not deserve same high quality
education?” he questioned.

“The concept of varying quality of education depending on schools should be
stopped. Government should instead prioritise upgrading the quality of all
schools,” he added.


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