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Periodic Table, Democracy Removed from NCERT Textbooks for Class 10

New Delhi, June 1, 2023: In a recent development, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has decided to remove chapters on the periodic table, democracy, and sources of energy from the textbooks of Class 10. This decision is part of a rationalization effort aimed at reducing the burden on students.

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The exclusion of the theory of evolution from the Class 10 curriculum had previously raised concerns. Now, newly released textbooks by the NCERT reveal further omissions, including a chapter on the periodic table. Additionally, chapters on environmental sustainability, sources of energy, democracy, challenges to democracy, and political parties have been dropped for Class 10 students in the latest revision.

According to the NCERT, the decision to remove these chapters was driven by the need to alleviate the load on students, particularly in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The reasons cited for the removal include difficulty level, overlapping content, and content deemed irrelevant in the current context.

However, students will still have the opportunity to learn about these subjects if they choose the relevant subjects in Class 11 and Class 12. In India, Class 10 is the last year in which science is taught as a compulsory subject. Only those students who select chemistry as a subject in the final two years of their education will study the periodic table.

Earlier this year, the NCERT faced criticism for removing the theory of evolution from the Class 10 science textbook. More than 1,800 scientists and educators expressed concern through an open letter about the rationalization exercise.

The government, however, has dismissed the criticism as propaganda. Minister of State for Education, Subhas Sarkar, stated that the rationalization of courses was necessary due to the COVID-19 pandemic and that Darwin's Theory is available on various websites for students interested in studying it. He also pointed out that Darwin's Theory is already included in the Class 12 syllabus.

The decision to remove the periodic table, democracy, and other chapters from Class 10 textbooks has sparked debate and raised questions about the impact on students' knowledge and understanding of these essential subjects. Critics argue that such exclusions may have long-term consequences on students' scientific literacy and understanding of democratic principles.

The NCERT's rationalization efforts aim to streamline the curriculum and alleviate the academic burden on students. However, it remains to be seen how these changes will affect the overall education landscape and the depth of knowledge acquired by students in key subject areas.

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