CBSE issues advisory to schools to use NCERT textbooks
CHENNAI: Central Board of Secondary Education has put up an advisory to schools affiliated to it to use the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) books for all classes as it has received reports and complaints from parents that they were pressurised by schools to buy an excessive number of textbooks published by others.
Calling prescription of too many books and coercing parents and children to buy the same as unhealthy, the board reiterated that schools needn't look beyond NCERT books as the material forms the base for not only board exams but competitive exams like JEE as well.
Currently, the mechanism is such that while schools need to use only NCERT books for Classes 9 to 12, other publications could be used for Classes up to 8. "But we are recommending that more schools start using NCERT books for lower classes as well," said K Srinivasan, regional officer-CBSE, Chennai, adding that it is only an advisory and not a hard and fast rule.
Schools, on their part, said they had reasons to opt for other publications for lower classes. Ajit Prasad Jain, senior principal, Bhavan's Rajaji Vidyashram, said with the nearest NCERT godown/sale counter being based in Bengaluru, there is nearly a wait of six months to procure books and it is convenient to buy other publications that don't sway away from the prescribed CBSE syllabus.
Chitra, a teacher with Vidya Mandir, said while NCERT books do provide a solid foundation of the syllabus, going for private publication books helps them cover more modules.
"We prescribe just one book in each subject such that there isn't much pressure on parents as far as expenses are concerned. We ensure that the books we hand pick not only cover the NCERT syllabus, but also helps us walk the extra mile in helping children develop a thorough knowledge of subjects with more modules or explanations as the case maybe," she said.
The CBSE said parents and students could avail free NCERT e-books on www.epathshala.nic.in and www.cbse.nic.in.