The Union Human Resources Development Minister Prakash Javadekar on 18 January 2017 launched a dedicated web portal ‘ShaGun’ for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) at New Delhi.
ShaGun was coined from the words ‘Shala’ that means schools and Gun, which is Gunvatta meaning Quality. It was developed with a twin track approach.
Aim: ShaGun was created with an aim to capture and showcase innovations and progress in Elementary Education sector of India by continuous monitoring of the flagship scheme - Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA).
ShaGun will help in monitoring progress in the implementation of SSA by assessing the performance of Union Territories and the states on key parameters. This monitoring will allow the government to plan and deliver its promise of quality education to all.
The SSA ShaGun web portal can be accessed at http://ssashagun.nic.in.
In addition to the launch of ShaGun, the minister also unveiled a ‘Toolkit for Master Trainers in Preparing Teachers for Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs’. This toolkit was prepared by the World Bank in collaboration with Ministry of Human Resource Development.
The toolkit is the series of five training modules and will provide the teachers with practical information on the effective inclusion of CWSN. It will help in building those pedagogical practices that would address the needs of all children with special needs.
Highlights of speech of Prakash Javadekar at the launching ceremony
• He reiterated union government’s commitment to improving the quality of education. For this purpose of improving the quality of education, his ministry will codify the learning outcome to set assessment standards for abilities with regards to mathematics, comprehension and language among others.
• He also said that his ministry will ensure that “all children acquire at least the minimum levels of learning” under Right to Education Act, 2009, that is, from Class I to VIII.
How is learning outcomes going to help in improving the quality of education?
Learning outcomes means assessment standards that indicate the expected levels of learning that children should achieve for that class. It can help in improving the quality of education by
• It will be used as checkpoints to assess learning at different points of time.
• It can help the teachers to understand the learning levels of children on their respective classes collectively as well as at individual level.
• It will be used as a point of reference for conducting achievement surveys.
Launching the e-initiative, ShaGun, Javadekar termed the initiative as a global democratic forum enabled by technology. This facility will help the Indian elementary education to reach new heights. It will also help in spreading constructive lessons.