This post explains Article 21A of the Indian Constitution, which guarantees the Right to Education as a fundamental right for all children between the ages of 6 and 14. The post discusses the significance of this right, the provisions included in the article, and the impact it has had on the Indian education system.
Article 21A of the Indian Constitution was inserted by the 86th Constitutional Amendment Act, 2002, to make education a fundamental right for all children in the age group of 6-14 years. The right to education is a significant step towards ensuring that every child in India receives a quality education, irrespective of their socio-economic background.
The provisions of Article 21A state that the State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the specified age group in a manner that is both child-friendly and in line with the standards set by the government. The article further stipulates that parents or guardians of the child have the responsibility to ensure that their child receives education, and the State shall take measures to ensure that this responsibility is fulfilled.
The Right to Education Act (RTE), 2009, was enacted to give effect to the provisions of Article 21A. The Act makes it mandatory for all private schools to reserve 25% of their seats for children from economically weaker sections and disadvantaged communities. The RTE Act also sets out standards for infrastructure, teacher-student ratios, and curricula for all schools to ensure that children receive quality education.
The impact of Article 21A and the RTE Act has been significant in transforming the Indian education system. The provision of free and compulsory education has led to an increase in enrolment rates, particularly among disadvantaged communities. The RTE Act has also ensured that all schools, including private institutions, provide quality education to children, thereby promoting social inclusion and reducing inequality in the education system.
In conclusion, Article 21A of the Indian Constitution is a landmark provision that has transformed the education landscape in India. The right to education is essential for the overall development of a child and their ability to contribute to society. The government’s efforts towards ensuring free and compulsory education for all children have brought about significant changes in the education system and have helped in bridging the gap between the privileged and the disadvantaged.