New Economics curriculum for class IX
Thimphu The Department of Curriculum and Research Development (DCRD) under the Education Ministry is confident that the new Economics curriculum for classes IX and X proposed from this year will sail through smoothly without any pilot tests required. According to the curriculum officer for Economics at the DCRD, Omnath Baraily, earlier most Economics teachers across the country were oriented to the text book contents and learning activities which were pilot tested. “ But teachers found out that the new curriculum is doable”,
he said. A detailed study on causes of the low performance of students in class XII (Bhutan Higher Secondary Examination Certificate) Economics revealed that one of the main reasons for the disappointing performance was the poor curriculum in Classes IX and X. The Economics curriculum is revised only after 15 years and is completed in three years. The former curriculum which was implemented in 1996 “was not providing a strong enough foundation to pursue higher studies in Economics”, said the curriculum officer so the Department consulted school teachers, students and
university lecturers for their views while coming up with the new curriculum. Parents’ views were taken into account, too. A course outlined for Classes IX and X was developed based on the feedback received from the stakeholders. DCRD aims to make the curriculum equally competent and compatible with that of other boards like Indian Certificate of Secondary Exams (ICSE), Central Board of Secondary Examinations (CBSE) and General Certificate of Secondary Examinations (GCSE). “We will be implementing the Class X curriculum in the next (2013) academic year,” said
Omnath Baraily. The aim of DCRD in coming up with the revision, he added, was to promote quality education in the country. Further, the content and statistical data in the previous curriculum was found to be inadequate to meet the needs of time. “It was felt that there was an urgent need to revise and update the curriculum”, said the curriculum head. Similarly, the Principal of Yoezerling Higher Secondary School, Chencho said that the former Economics curriculum is out dated and does not have new topics like the arrival of Foreign Direct Investments(FDI). “The content of the former curriculum was not relevant with the activities of our country,” he said adding that the new curriculum is an improved version. An introductory chapter was added in the curriculum as students begin learning Economics from Class IX onwards. “We re-wrote the rest of the chapters keeping the topics same”, said the curriculum officer. However, some students feel that the changes in curriculum will hamper their studies as they find it tough to adapt to new subject matters “especially in the higher classes”, said Yeshi, a student from Yangchenphu Higher Secondary School, Thimphu. Even a teacher from a school in Thimphu feels that the performance of teachers and students will deteriorate with such changes. However, DCRD plans to localize Economics Curriculum in the Bhutanese context even for Classes XI and XII in the future, most probably during the 11th Five Year Plan. “There is no urgency to revise Classes XI and XII Economics Curriculum at the moment,” said Omnath Baraily stating that the current curriculum is quite strong as of now.