Srinagar, Aug 18: The University of Kashmir on Thursday held an orientation-cum-awareness programme on the National Education Policy-2020 for principals of degree colleges of Kashmir.
Vice-Chancellor Prof Nilofer Khan presided over the inaugural session of the conference while Mr Rohit Kansal, IAS, Principal Secretary Higher Education Department, Government of Jammu and Kashmir, was the chief guest on the occasion. Director Colleges Prof Yasmeen Ashai was the guest of honour.
The conference—second of its kind in the last one month—was organised by KU’s NEP Cell to deliberate on the implementation strategies for NEP-2020 at the University and College levels.
In his special address, Mr Rohit Kansal said Jammu and Kashmir is proudly the first place in the country to implement the National Education Policy and is ready to welcome its first batch of students under NEP from the current academic year.
“It has been an outcome of a great synergistic and symbiotic endeavour of our major stakeholders, including the University of Kashmir, that we have been able to take the first positive and definite step to implement the NEP-2020 in J&K, the first place in the country to do so," he said.
He said the University of Kashmir has formulated the new NEP curriculum for colleges well in time, putting Kashmir ahead of all colleges and schools in the country to make this happen.
Reiterating that time for deliberations on NEP was already over and it's time to get going with the implementation strategy, Mr Kansal exhorted upon college principals and faculty to familiarise students with the new curriculum and align the time-tables and teaching-learning processes in accordance with the same.
Referring to the technological aspect of NEP-2022, the Principal Secretary said the virtual learning component under NEP will enable access, equity and democratisation of higher education by offering 40 percent of credits to a student through the medium of online learning.
Mr Kansal also talked in detail about the Academic Bank of Credits and the J&K UT's added initiative of offering 30 credit skill-embedded programmes that aims to increase employability of the student pass-outs.
Vice-Chancellor Prof Nilofer Khan in her presidential address said the "collective contribution and commitment" of all stakeholders towards smooth implementation of NEP-2020 is bearing fruits and this synergy must continue so that the objectives of NEP are fully achieved.
"It is a moment of pride that our UT and our University have taken a lead in NEP implementation. This has indeed made our UT administration, its associated institutions and our University a role model for rest of the country," she said, complimenting the NEP Cell headed by Dean Academic Affairs Prof Farooq A Masoodi for organising regular orientation programmes to ensure smooth implementation of NEP in the University and its affiliated colleges.
"This great transformation in the country's education sector is coming after more than three decades. There may be more challenges in the way of realising the NEP objectives, but it offers us an opportunity to realign our academic ecosystem to meet the new benchmarks in teaching and learning,” Prof Nilofer said.
Director Colleges Prof Yasmeen Ashai appreciated the efforts of the Kashmir University and other relevant stakeholders in smooth roll-out of the NEP 2020.
She said proper awareness of the policy document, its purpose and the modus-operandi for its implementation are important to overcome any challenges that the new policy throws for academicians and administrators.
Dean Academics Prof Farooq A Masoodi said a close collaboration between colleges and the University will enable better understanding of different academic ecosystems in which the colleges and the University operate.
He also outlined the activities and achievements of the University's NEP Cell.
Dr Farzana Gulzar, Coordinator NEP Cell delivered the welcome address while Dr Javaid Rashid, Coordinator PG CBCS conducted proceedings of the inaugural session, which was attended by top KU administrators including Registrar Dr Nisar A Mir, Controller of Examinations Dr Majid Zaman, Deans of Faculties, Heads of Departments, Media Advisor and Director EMRC Dr Salima Jan, besides officials of the NEP Cell.
In the technical sessions, two panel discussions were held. The first discussion on ‘Institutional preparedness for NEP, 2020: Curriculum, Infrastructure and Manpower’ had the panelists including Prof Farooq A Masoodi, Prof Yasmeen Ashai and Dr Khurshid Ahmad Khan, Nodal Principal, Kashmir Division Colleges, while the second discussion on ‘Operational Structure of NEP-2020’ had the panelists including Prof M Ashraf, Consultant CBCS (UG, KU), Prof M Shafi, Department of Commerce KU and Prof Tehmeena Yousuf, Principal GDC Thindam Kreeri. Dr Zubair Masoodi from Govt Women’s College Sopore and Dr M Younis Bhat from GDC Kulgam moderated the discussions.
Later, Dr Majid Zaman and Dr Ibrahim Wani, Coordinator ABC made a brief presentation on multiple Entry and Exit in academic programmes, National Academic Depository (NAD) and Academic Bank of Credits (ABC), while Dr Saleema Jan and Dr Farzana Gulazar made a presentation on introduction to SWAYAM and Floating of MOOCs.