The assessment was done by the District Institute of Education and Continuous Professional Development (DIECPD).

The assessment was done by the District Institute of Education and Continuous Professional Development (DIECPD).

Former state director of primary education Mahavir Mane said the basic problem was the lack of use of “standardised Marathi” in classes and the focus on mathematics and science over languages. “Whether it is teachers or parents, everybody gives more attention to mathematics and science. A school is judged based on the mathematics and science scores by its students. Languages are often ignored,” he said.

“Local dialects of Marathi are different from what is considered the ‘correct Marathi’. Many times, the students write in a local dialect as guided by their teachers. But ‘written’ Marathi is different. The result is the students might have written an answer correctly in times of the dialect, but it might be wrong in the ‘written Marathi’,” he added.

Zilla parishad teacher Bhausaheb Chaskar, who has also been a member of the curricula development committee, expressed concerns over the lack of teachers’ training when it comes to helping students with languages.

“The new standard II book is out, but they are yet to train the teachers. When it comes to Marathi, there is a debate on how to write even a single word. Despite all the confusions, there is no basic training for the teachers. The students are affected most,” he said.

DIECPD officials said training for the teachers has started following the evaluation. “We have undertaken several initiatives to improve the students’ quality of education. An action programme is being created at the district level by conducting a timely test on the students’ learning levels. We are finding out what the students are getting in terms of basic skills. We are focusing on students at the lower assessment level to do better,” DIECPD, Pune, principal Kamaladevi Aawate said.

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