With Uttar Pradesh Madhyamik Shiksha Parishad (UPMSP), popularly known as UP Board, implementing National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) syllabus for English in class 10 and class 12, students of these classes will no longer study works of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore and former President S Radhakrishnan from the new academic session (2021-22).

This change has resulted in the story “The Home Coming” by Rabindranath Tagore and the essay “The Women’s Education” by S Radhakrishnan besides AL Basham’s ‘The Heritage of India’ getting removed from the curriculum of class 12.

Likewise, RK Narayanan’s story “An Astrologer’s Day” and “The Lost Child” by Mulk Raj Anand, both of which were part of class 12 syllabus, have also been taken out of the curriculum. Even poems of renowned poets like John Milton and PB Shelley will no longer be taught to class 12 students.

On the same lines, Sarojini Naidu’s poem “The Village Song” that was part of class 10 syllabus has now been removed just like the works of Chakravarti Rajagopalachari, WM Raeburn and R Srinivasan.

Though UP Board officials are reluctant to comment on the change as it is yet to be put up on the official website of UPMSP, senior officials confirmed these changes citing an approval received from the state government recently. “Within the next few days itself, the new curriculum would become online,” said one of these senior officials in the know about things.

Officials said the NCERT syllabus means the students would need to study lesser number of books now. There were four books besides grammar in class 12 of UP Board till now but now just two books “Flamingo” and “Vistas” will be taught.

In high school, however, while there were two books earlier and now also two books “First Flight” and “Footprints Without Feet” will be taught, they added. As per the new syllabus, students in class 12 in “Flamingo” will study Anees Jung’s “Last Spring”, William Douglas’s “Deep Water” and Louis Fischer’s “Indigo” from his work “The Life of Mahatma Gandhi”.

In poetry, the students will study poems by famous poets like Kamala Das, Pablo Neruda and John Keats. In “Vistas” supplementary book, Pearl S Buck’s “The Enemy” and works of Tishani Doshi, John Updike and Kalki will be taught.

In high school, the students in the prose section of the “First Flight” book will study works by the former President of South Africa Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, author N Frank and Russian writer Anton Chekhov. In the poetry section, works of famous poets like Robert Frost, Walt Whitman and William Butler Yeats will be studies by them even as the supplementary book will feature works by renowned authors such as Ruskin Bond, Robert Arthur, HG Wells and KA Abbas.

Teachers’ Reactions

“The NCERT syllabus is a good one and some lessons will now be taught to students related to the problems of the present times while in some there is information related to the rich past of India. The new curriculum will lead to multidimensional personality development of the students,” said Raju Yadav, the lecturer of English at BNT Inter College, Meja Road, Prayagraj.

“An attempt has been made by the UP Board to strike a good balance between literature and grammar in the syllabus of English in class 12. It will be beneficial for students,” said Mohd Rafiq, the lecturer of English at Ramanuj Inter College, Meja, Prayagraj.

Transformation nearing completion

UP Board has further neared the complete transformation from the old syllabus to the new NCERT-based syllabus for all subjects akin to Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), said a UP Board official confirming the development.

UP Board in past three years has introduced NCERT-based books for 26 subjects in high school and intermediate. It had introduced 31 books of 18 different subjects based on NCERT syllabus for students of class 9 to class 12 from academic session 2018-19. In 2019-20 also, the board introduced some new books based on NCERT syllabus in high school (social science) and class 12 (history, geography, civics, economics and sociology).

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