Saturday, 6 August 2016

3.50 Crore children attend Pre-School Education at 13.50 lakhs Anganwadis across the country

Pre-School Education (PSE)/ Early Childhood Care & Education (ECCE) services in India are delivered through public, private and non-governmental service providers. The public channel, ICDS is the largest service provider of ECCE. 3.50 crore children (3-6years) are attending PSE at 13.50 lakh Anganwadi Centers as per information received from the States/UTs under ICDS Scheme as on 31.03.2016. The Right
of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act (RTE) which came into effect from April1, 2010, has addressed ECCE under Section 11 of the Act which states, "with a view to prepare children above the age of three years for elementary education and to provide early childhood care and education for all children until they complete the age of six years, the appropriate Government may make necessary arrangement for providing free pre-school education for such children".

The Government of India formulated and notified the National Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) Policy on 12.10.2013. The National ECCE Policy recognizes the unregulated private channel across the country although with varied quality. The policy also recognizes the need to harmonize the activities of all these service providers, in accordance with service delivery norms, standards and regulations. To standardize the quality of PSE/ECCE in the country, basic quality standards and specifications have been laid down in National ECCE Policy. Further, guidelines have also been issued for National ECCE curriculum framework and Quality standards for ECCE on 23.01.14 to be implemented by States/UTs in the country. The guidelines adhere to the philosophy of integrated approach for holistic child development. The quality standards focus on the use of developmentally appropriate toys and learning materials for play, exploration, experimentation and problem solving. 

This information was given by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Smt. Krishana Raj in the Lok Sabha today. 

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