Dear Educator,

As part of our ongoing mission to enable educators and enrich learning, we organized a brainstorming session on CCE. It served as a platform for spreading awareness and encourage discussion about the significant changes that CCE brings with it. The panel comprised of eminent educationists and was attended by many educators from around Delhi.

Printed Transcripts: In this and the following newsletters, we share with you excerpts of the session. We have also printed a booklet of the transcripts of the session. If you would like to receive a copy of it, please write to us at with your name and mailing address, and we will mail it to you immediately.

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Videos: You can also view extracts of the session in the videos below.


A Summary

The Panel

Some Excerpts

Questions and Suggestions

Enabling CCE


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CCE session

The coming together of educators and principals of schools at the India International Centre on 30 October 2010 was an enlightening event for all. The sharing of views, insights, hopes, exigencies and doubts, made for a very profitable and propitious experience. The more significant questions, observations and conclusions thrown up during this churning may be summarized as follows.

The concept of CCE and its implementation has, in a way, turned upside-down the traditional notion and perception of the teaching-learning experience. But taking into account the precedent that it took the US four years to implement CCE properly, one need not be overly anxious as India is still only in its second year.

The flexibility and inclusiveness allowed by the CCE system liberates both teachers and learners from the set norms of conservative patterns. However, a rethinking and relearning is imperative for principals, teachers and counsellors alike to change mindsets. The skills and strategies of teaching need to be revamped. In order to do this and set teachers on the right path, intensive workshops need to be conducted for them. There is certainly more responsibility on the teachers because they need to view children from all angles and assess many heretofore uncharted aspects for which they aren’t yet prepared.

What educators now need to know is that the idea of success is only a function of the well-being of the individual and the society as a whole. Any learning that does not promote well-being is not valuable enough. Students have to be made conscious stakeholders in the learning system — an integral part, and not at the receiving end of, a preconceived arrangement Learning must no longer be considered a linear and unilateral process from level to level, but that which develops at all levels simultaneously, which encourages lateral and out-of-the-box thinking. Teachers are encouraged to look afresh at their pupils in a more holistic manner, as human beings, and not simply as learners of prepared and predigested academic curricula. Another important observation was that learning should not be viewed as simply for an elite group, and teachers need to become comfortable with the idea of “India in the classrooms”, which means more and more heterogeneit! y and therefore a system which caters to all.

It is, however, not practical to expect the new system to create an immediate stress-free learning environment. Until mindsets change the stress cannot be done away with. There are various new stresses both on teachers and children: continuous observation may make the children self-conscious and uncomfortable; the teachers are confused about the new parameters set for assessment by the CBSE. There is the inescapable reality of the teacher-student ratios with over 50 children to a class.

The teachers find themselves overburdened with clerical work. There are the problems of impartial assessments and subjectivity of teachers, managing retests, defining value points for FAs, the value of aptitude and proficiency tests, divided parent opinion and so on.

The discussion threw light on the fact that there is, happily, space provided within the system of CCE for customization and moderation of the teaching-learning transactions, suited to individual needs and different schools so that they can be adapted to the best advantage of the learners. It was also considered absolutely necessary to have appropriate software in place to help the teachers with record- keeping, report-card-making etc.

The consensus, at the end of the session, was that the spirit of CCE should be followed doggedly: that ultimately no child should be left behind and no individual should be left without openings that will help him or her to become an independent earner and to leading a fruitful life.


The Moderator

  • Ms Ameeta Mulla Wattal, Principal, Springdales School, Pusa Road, New Delhi, Resource Person for (NCERT) and (CBSE), National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA)

The Panelists

  • Rev Br L D Lobo, Principal, St Columba’s School, New Delhi.
  • Ms Suman Nath, Principal, Tagore International School, East of Kailash, New Delhi.
  • Ms Nina Sehgal, Director, Delhi Public School, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi.
  • Ms Goldy Malhotra, Principal, Modern School, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi.
  • Dr Ruchi Seth, Principal, Delhi Public School, Sushant Lok, New Delhi.
  • Ms Sangeeta Sheel, Headmistress, St Columba’s School, New Delhi.
  • Ms Richa Sood, Principal, Dehradun Public School, Ghaziabad.
  • Ms Rina Singh, Principal, Gargi Girls School, Meerut.


Ms Ameeta Mulla Wattal line

Ameeta WattalWhy are we afraid that Vikram or Ram or Rahim or Mala or Suman cannot read or write? Why are we not afraid that they cannot paint, they cannot dance, they cannot meditate, they cannot cope with anger, envy or stress, they cannot express tenderness or love, or they don’t really have an understanding of who they are or even if they have a self to find? If what we are teaching in our classrooms has nothing to do with their health, their happiness or their sanity and survival, what then is our education worth? . . .

There really isn’t any reason why we would have to have two aggressive examinations between the ages of 14 and 16. Now, if there were no examinations, then how would we go forward from there? Because we would have a complete vestibule and not a compartment of learning, from nursery, that’s Year 3, all the way to Year 15. How would we move in that? And how could learning be taken where children were brought back to themselves?

Keeping this whole understanding in view, the Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation system, which has been a very integral part of learning universally, was finally integrated into our system. . .

I think, today it is not about having challenged children, it’s about India being in our classrooms, and we have a variety of children within our classrooms. And so we have to look at different methods and ways to see how we reach children in the whole instance of learning, in the whole concept of learning. And today, learning has become not only information-based, it has also become very concept-based and knowledge-based.

So, it is from the text to the context which is integral to CCE, from being synthetic to also being aesthetic, from being unilateral to being bilateral. . . .

I am not saying it is a perfect system, but it’s a system that is coming in, and I think that if we work on it in a committed and precise manner over a couple of years, our children will start thinking out of the box, our children will start thinking synthetically. Our children will start thinking with a certain level of connectivity, and not in isolation as textbook thinking happens.”

Ms Nina Sehgal — The Concept of CCE line

Nina SehgalI look at CCE in two ways. One, that it liberates because it enlarges the scope of learning. It does not limit learning only to content, does not limit learning to written tests which basically allow different kinds of learners to learn in different kinds of ways. It has legitimized the kind of practices which good schools generally have been following for many years.

Your ability to comprehend, memorize and reproduce certain bits of information, are very limited skills, and do not help you in your personal or professional life in a big way. CCE allows us to bring various experiences into the classroom. It enlarges the scope of learning to include all the kinds of activities that have been suggested and have been used by many schools for many years, which provide an opportunity for the teacher to make learning experiential. It also provides opportunities for evaluation and assessment to be done in broader ways.

If you integrate these activities into your teaching, you decide that this is your curriculum or these are the concepts you are going to focus on, in a certain manner, i.e. the traditional manner. Yet many others will focus in a more experimental manner which need not be tested in the traditional way.

It is for us to interpret our teaching system by asking ourselves, why am I teaching? What am I teaching? What is the child learning? Because when we are teaching, we often focus on the teachers, that you are teaching. But we forget that we are here to teach children, and unless they learn and then also question what they are learning, why are they learning or how long is the learning going to stay with them? Unless we ask these questions we may not find the right focus for our teaching. Our teaching is effective only if our children learn and grasp what we teach.

So, we need to decide what is it that we want them to learn, and with the inclusion of life skills, emotional skills and other areas of growth, it has given teachers an opportunity to look at children as children, not just as students who are supposed to give you the correct answers.

I know that there are a lot of challenges for teachers. You know when you are assessing a child of 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 or 16 years, the most difficult years, when he is experimenting, when he is rebellious, when he is not emotionally secure or emotionally mature and you are awarding a grade, feeling that this child misbehaved and fought, so he does not deserve a good grade. This is where the teacher needs to be very cautious. There are certain things which are developmental, certain behaviours which are a part of a child’s growth and you need to consider that a teenager is, by definition, rebellious. We need to guide children gently that this is an acceptable way of responding and this is an unacceptable way.

I would say it is challenging for teachers to write about development in co-scholastic areas and behaviour aspects. To my mind, this is the time all of us need to grow ourselves, grow in our thought process, grow in our approach towards teaching, otherwise we will fail our children. To my mind this is a huge challenge for all of us, and a great opportunity. Thank you!”

Ms Suman Nath — Logistics of Implementation of CCE & Teacher Training line

Suman NathThe stress is because the assessment has started without any teacher training and without any change in the curriculum. The same book – the same teacher, and the assessment has started, whereas the assessment should have been the last to come.

So, we have to make some changes in the curriculum and have some teacher-training accordingly. But we have started from the reverse and that is why we, our children and our teachers are facing, problems.

In case there is a child who is not able to perform in a pen and paper test, I would put him into a group discussion, where he might do well! If not in a group discussion, then maybe he would do well when he speaks in front of the class, or when he does the display board. He tells me his topic then. So I will assess him then. Since children learn in different ways, we should also assess them in different ways.

Then the logistics – (the number of children in the classroom, from 25 to a 100) There are certain things we cannot do without. If we are doing this CCE assessment, then we better learn how to do it.

For every topic, for every Formative Assessment, we have a tabular month-wise form where we have mentioned the value points, so that the parents and children are very clear on how they will be assessed. The areas should be like – the content, presentation, confidence, etc. and not something like behaviour in the classroom in the context of a seminar or project. Children should not be confused about this. We must have every type of formative assessment clearly-defined, and the value points clearly-defined. When we are doing clearly-defined assessments, the parents, children and teachers will be clear about it. You can see this example on our (the school’s) website.

CCE should be implemented right from the beginning. You cannot say, now from, 9th onwards, I am going to assess you through attitudes, values, etc. but till then the examination system was good enough for you. We have to have a group of teachers to assess a group of students, a single teacher may be partial. We may have anecdotal and descriptive records but everything must be clearly-defined.

On a non-teaching Saturday, teachers should have a meeting and share anecdotal records and indicators with the class teachers, that’s the way it has worked for us. In the end, I would say what we must do, we have to do, and we will do wonders with it.

Dr Ruchi Seth — On the Concept of CCE line

Ruchi SethThe idea is, the whole concept of CCE is based on improving the learning environment. Let’s go beyond FAs and SAs. CCE permeates every aspect of school life. We are also trying to learn teacher-pedagogy which is how the teacher teaches. Children learn in a spiral manner and not in a linear manner. They don’t go from one level to another but keep revisiting concepts and when they revisit concepts they make corrections in case they are incorrect in something.

The FAs become more significant in this whole scenario, because when they get feedback the teacher also gets a trigger about where they have gone wrong and what is it which needs to be improved in their pedagogy.

Right from the beginning, it takes us to our mission and vision statement. What is the mission of the school? After all, if it is a child–centric institution then everything has to be aligned. What is the mission of the school, for, e.g. if we want to create life-long learners, then does the content or curriculum become important or is it important how does a child learn?

Is the teacher able to make corrections in this whole thinking process, as to how the child is learning? Let’s see, for example, a spelling test that you give to a child. A child gets 4 on 10 on the test. So the teacher gives him the marks but does not give any insight as to where the child is going wrong. Or a project – does the teacher give any analysis of what is lacking and what is not? The whole concept of FAs is based on feedback.

A lot of students are very happy with this whole process of FAs and SAs. Those who are not very good in the academic area, not so left-brained, but more right-brained are getting an opportunity.

With inclusive education and RTE we have to address varied needs. . . it will be addressing the needs of individual students. Overall today’s education system is very holistic and we will have heterogeneous classrooms in the future. Seeing that no child is left behind in the learning process is imperative.

Do await the concluding part in the next newsletter.


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