The National Independent Schools Alliance (NISA), called for observing 5th September, celebrated as Teachers' Day as Black Day as a mark of protest against increasing government intervention in day to day school management. NISA also called for a Teachers Protection Act, as a legal safeguard for the safety of teachers, principal, school management and the support staff.
Over 60,000 NISA member schools from across 22 states participated in the campaigns. Teachers and staff members wore black bands marking their solidarity, and a panel discussion was held on teacher safety measures and challenges with Mr. Kulbhushan Sharma, President, NISA; Mr. Premchand Reseal, President, Private Land Public Schools Association; Mr. Anil Goel, President, South Delhi Private Schools Association; and Mr. Thomas Antony, National Coordinator, NISA.
In the month of September, Centre for Civil Society organised its flagship course in public policy, the ipolicy for Young Leaders, across three cities- Delhi, Mumbai and Kalahandi with over 230 student participants.. Amplifying our outreach and impact, we conducted its biggest ever ipolicy at the Kalahandi Dialogue in Odisha on 28 September attended by over 150 young leaders.
Our speakers included Barun Mitra, Founder and Director, Liberty Institute; Parth Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society; Makarand Bakore, Lawyer, Mumbai High Court; and Shubho Roy, Legal Consultant, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy among others. Through engaging sessions addressing the role of the state and the rule of law, property rights, public choice, among others, the participants were introduced to the principles of sound public policy, and explored the scope of the state, market and civil society in driving development and prosperity.
Date: Monday, September 10, 2018
Time: 06:00 PM
Venue: Viceregal Hall, The Claridges, 12 APJ Abdul Kalam Road, New Delhi
We partnered with the Freidrich Neumann Foundation for Freedom (FNF) for a special lecture on 'More Freedom For All? A Modern Liberal Program For The World' to mark its 60th anniversary. The lecture was delivered by Gordon Mackay, Secretary General of Liberal International, a world federation of liberal and progressive democratic political parties.
Other speakers at the event included Dr Parth J Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society and Dr Ronald Meinardus, Head of Regional Office, South Asia, Friedrich Naumann Foundation.
Addressing the media on 1st September 2018 in Kartarpur, Punjab Education Minister O.P. Soni announced the state government's plan to introduce a coupon system of Direct Benefits Transfer(DBT) to give children access to education in private schools in the district of Jalandhar. Keeping in mind the state government's inability to supply teachers to government schools in the border district of Jalandhar, the state government has announced its plans to give coupons worth Rs. 3000 per month to each student enabling them to now access private schools in the neighbourhood.
CCS has consistently advocated for a shift to per-student funding through vouchers, direct cash transfers or scholarships as an instrument of improving access to, quality of and efficiency in education. Earlier in the year, we had made presentation to the Punjab Government on DBTs in education, and participated in the meeting of the Punjab Governance Reforms and Ethics Commission, to present a proposal a DBT pilot in the state. To know more about our school choice campaign visit http://schoolchoice.in/.
Date: 29 September 2018
Venue: Centre for Civil Society, Hauz Khas , New Delhi
Centre for Civil Society, in partnership with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (FNF) hosted the second edition of Baithak on Digital Rights and Freedom of Expression. The discussion was moderated by Nikhil Pahwa, Co-founder, Savetheinternet.in (now the Internet Freedom Foundation) for net neutrality in India. 25 CCS alumni participated the riveting dialogue centered around topics such as net neutrality and data protection were also explored with Nikhil drawing upon his experiences in online media advocacy and movement building.
‘Baithak: Conversations in Policy’ is our newest initiative for CCS and FNF graduates to come together for a discussion on contemporary socio-political and economic issues facilitated by domain experts and prominent liberal voices in India.
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Date: 30 July, 2018
Venue: Centre for Civil Society, Hauz Khas , New Delhi
On 30th July, we hosted Kris Mauren, Executive Director at the Acton Institute, at the CCS office in New Delhi for a dialogue on market-based solutions to poverty. Kris Introduced the audience to the Acton Institute’s work around the world and emphasised the immense potential for think tanks to impact change in India. Drawing on the institute’s PovertyCure Project Kris demonstrated the need for a radical shift in the developmental paradigm, urging governments and communities to shift focus from aid to enterprise to address enduring poverty.
We conducted iPolicy, our 3-day certificate course in public policy in the cities of Delhi and Mumbai, engaging 75 young leaders. Ipolicy is our flagship program that introduces policy enthusiasts to liberal perspectives in public policy through dialogues, simulations, games and interactive sessions. Our recent ipolicy in Delhi and Mumbai hosted speakers like Mohit Satyanand, Member, Board of Advisors, Centre for Civil Society; Shubho Roy, Legal Consultant, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy; Barun Mitra, Founder and Director, Liberty Institute; and Parth Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society, among others. Our speakers steered sessions addressing the theoretical foundations of critical policy concerns, including ‘Making India Rich’, ‘ Social Change and Public Policy’, ‘Rule of Law’, ‘Public Choice: Benefits and Costs of Collective Action’ and many more.
If you’d like us to conduct an iPolicy on your campus, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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CCS and the National Independent Schools Alliance(NISA) have worked consistently to prevent arbitrary closure of budget private schools that are unable to meet the inordinate regulatory mandates of the RTE. Many budget private schools face the threat of closure due to their inability to meet the input-heavy norms set by the RTE Act 2009, thus depriving children of quality education and the parents, of choice in education. Since 2015, over 4000 schools have been closed, and over 14,000 face the threats of closure.
Recently a parliamentary panel recommended the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to make ‘realistic’ plans for recognition of private schools in order to ensure that school closures do not starve the children of education, making the purpose of RTE redundant.
This August, we launched the first edition of EduDoc Film and Policy Fellowship, a unique mentorship based documentary-making fellowship program for education and film enthusiasts. Introduced as a part of the fourth edition of Edudoc, our international short film competition, the fellowship has been initiated with a cohort of 62 fellows from 9 countries, who have set out on an exciting journey of learning, in order to communicate to people the challenges, obstacles and innovations in the education all over the globe.
We hosted two webinars to commence the program, steered by Dr. Amit Chandra, Independent Consultant, NISA and Policy Fellow, Centre for Civil Society, who introduced the fellows to the education policy landscape in India, and Mr. Debjeet Kundu, maker of ‘Truancy’ ranked among top five for EduDoc 2017, speaking about the basics of film-making.