Improvement Required in Existing Assessment Methods: Pratham CEO Rukmini Banerji

Image used for information purpose only. Picture Credit:

Rukmini Banerji, CEO of Pratham Education Foundation, emphasized the necessity to enhance our existing methods of assessment in school education during an interaction with Business Standard on Tuesday. Regarding the proposed open book examinations (OBE) by the Central Board of Secondary Education, Banerji commented that it is a positive initiative.

“We need to try new things. The open book exam idea should be tried in low-stakes settings. We should try it and then discuss it and debate it. All in the spirit of trying to figure out better ways of understanding what our children can do. We need to improve our methods of assessment,” she said.

The Pratham Education Foundation collaborates directly with over 10,000 communities throughout India and collaborates with multiple state governments to identify educational gaps and develop programs to address them. Additionally, the foundation publishes the Annual Status of Education Report, commonly referred to as the ASER report, to illuminate the learning progress of different age groups and genders.

The ASER report issued in 2022 highlighted a significant decline in learning levels across most states in India following the COVID-19 pandemic. This decline was observed in both government and private schools, affecting both girls and boys.

During discussions on Tuesday, Banerji noted that there has been a recovery in learning levels following the initial decline.

“According to me, India should be in a better position now,” she said. Speaking further she lauded that clear definitions of objectives mentioned in the New Education Policy have aided the teachers in making efforts to improve the learning.

Banerji said there has been a lot of work going on in various states after its introduction.

“There is a push,” she said, adding that she was “impressed” at the effort that some states are putting in.“In the states in which we work, it is the most in Uttar Pradesh.”