It aims to impart foundational literacy and numeracy to every child by the end of Grade 3

In a major push towards addressing the learning needs of children in the age group of 3 to 9 years, the central government on Monday launched the National Initiative for Proficiency in Reading with Understanding and Numeracy (NIPUN Bharat).

The programme will ensure that every child in the country necessarily attains foundational literacy and numeracy by the end of Grade 3, by 2026-27.

NIPUN Bharat envisages making the experience of learning at the foundational stage Holistic, Integrated, Inclusive, Enjoyable, and Engaging said Union Minister for Education Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ said at the virtual launch event.

Pokhriyal stated that teachers need to focus on every child for developing basic language; literacy and numeracy skills which will help them develop into better readers and writers.

The Minister underlined that the National Education Policy 2020 has laid down that attaining foundational literacy and numeracy for all children must become an immediate national mission.

In keeping with this, the Department has developed a comprehensive guideline under NIPUN Bharat, through a series of intensive consultations with implementing partners, experts to make it flexible and collaborative, he added.

Pokhriyal said that it covers key technical aspects of foundational literacy and numeracy as well as the administrative aspects for effectively setting up an implementation mechanism at the National, State, District, Block and School level.

He also informed that an approval of Rs 2688.18 crore has already been given under Samagra Shiksha scheme to the States and UTs for implementation of the various interventions for Foundational Stage in 2021-22.

This Mission has been launched under the aegis of the centrally sponsored scheme of Samagra Shiksha. It calls for ensuring that every child in the country necessarily attains foundational literacy and numeracy by the end of Grade 3, by 2026-27.

The Mission will focus on providing access and retaining children in foundational years of schooling; teacher capacity building; development of high quality and diversified Student and Teacher Resources/Learning Materials; and tracking the progress of each child in achieving learning outcomes.

Addressing the participants, Union Minister of State for Education Sanjay Dhotre stated that quality education is the bedrock of strong nation building and, foundational education in literacy and numeracy skills is its core component.

The Minister claimed that in the coming years, this mission will change the outlook of our school education, and will strongly impact 21st Century India.

He stressed that NIPUN Bharat will not only help our students to take a big leap in their higher classes, but it will also have a major impact in making our students globally competitive.

Moreover, NIPUN Bharat is envisaged to support and encourage students, along with their schools, teachers, parents, and communities, in every way possible, to help realise the true potential of our children and propel the country to new heights.