Open House: Should NCERT books be made compulsory in all schools? : The Tribune India

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Open House: Should NCERT books be made compulsory in all schools?

Prescribe affordable, easy-to-understand NCERT books

Open House: Should NCERT books be made compulsory in all schools?

A rush of customers at a bookshop in Sector 19, Chandigarh. file photo

To have a uniform standard of education in government and private schools, it is necessary to prescribe same standard of textbooks. The NCERT prepares and publish books of standard quality and value. Some private schools for their monetary benefits prescribe books of their choice publishers and further compel students to purchase from particular shops. For the benefit of students and parents this type of malpractice must be stopped. Books published by the NCERT must be prescribed by all schools. A board should be formed to monitor the quality of NCERT books periodically. Welfare of students and quality of education must be paramount.

Sqn Ldr Manjit Singh Johar (retd)

NCERT books are updated by experts

To think that the NCERT books are insufficient might be quite inaccurate. The NCERT books are not only the source of knowledge, but also are regularly updated by some of the brightest minds. But stiff competition is paving way for savage commercialisation. Paying exorbitantly for better results is something that parents sign up for, at the time of admission. To prevent harassment, the schools should look into making the purchase of book sets more convenient and hassle free.

Monika K

Private schools looting parents

Private schools refer expensive books which are available at a particular shop and thus looting parents. Many times administration interfere in this matter but due to strong lobbying and liasoning of private school, they are able to manage the situation and charge exorbitant rate every time with new syllabus. The NCERT books are good option which can be follow all over India but other publishers can be allowed but with no change of syllabus or they take approval of rate from the Central Government.

Avinash goyal, Chandigarh

Provide pvt publishers’ books free of cost

Schools forcing parents to buy expensive books from select vendors have made things difficult for parents. The schools should ask the parents to buy NCERT books which are affordable. The rest of the books which are published by private publishing, firms should be distributed by the schools free of cost if they are required in the teaching curriculum. Schools have no right to burn the pockets of parents, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic which has dented the common man’s life.

Saikrit Gulati, Chandigarh

Now, Education has become a business

The Right to Education Act makes elementary education free and compulsory for children between 6 to 14 years of age. Now education has become a business. Middle class on the pretext of getting good job for their children have no option but to pay heavy fee and costlier books from particular stores as government schools lack staff and basic amenities. To make education reach in the hands of common man, ordinance should be passed to put cap on hike in fees and expenses at whims and fancies. This will help to check arbitrary expenses asked by schools and NCERT should be made compulsory. Authorities should tighten noose around schools charging staggering fees and forcing to buy books from particular shops. There should be economical and uniform fees structure.

Charu Malhotra, Mohali

Govt should provide low-cost education

The NCERT books should be made compulsory in all schools. These books are affordable and easily available in the open market. If government made NCERT books compulsory in all schools, then it helps to decrease corruption. Primary aim of the government should be affordable education for all in private and government schools. By making compulsory NCERT books in every school, this is fair step towards uniform civil code.

Adish Sood, Amloh

Can’t ignore books by private publishers

It seems there are no takers for private schools. Everyone wants quality education, teachers, results and quality infrastructure but when it comes to the ground reality, we start criticising private schools. On one hand we talk about privatisation, on the other we do not promote private publishers. There is a lot of ambiguity in our own conduct and expectation when it comes to books. Where do private schools and private publishers go?

Anju Mohan, Panchkula

let parents buy books from any shop

There is a close nexus between private schools and booksellers. It is extremely disheartening that the Education Department of the UT Administration is unable to break this chain. Generally schools may be getting a commission from the vendors who are selling their books and uniforms. This is another sign of commercialisation of the education system. The parents and the students should be free to purchase books from any shop. As the syllabus of the CBSE is based on the NCERT books, the government should make it compulsory for the schools to teach only from NCERT books rather than forcing the students/parents to buy books written and published by private sector entities. The cartalisation of these publishers make parents a harried lot.

Dr. Anil Kumar Yadav, Chandigarh

Pay attention to govt schools

Private schools are mushrooming at the cost of government schools as the administration pays less attention to government schools. The managements of private schools not only charge heavy fee but also made it compulsory to buy books and uniform from specific shops. Their charges are high because schools prescribe expensive private publishers books instead of NCERT books, which are cheap and available in all shops. The government should issue instructions that all schools will prescribe only NCERT books.

Sukhwant Bhullar, Chandigarh

Ensure availability of NCERT books

Every year a hue and cry is raised on non-NCERT books prescribed by private school for purchasing from particular shops. And this all is happening in the presence of the government. Authorities should ban this and punish the culprits. Only NCERT books should be prescribed and authorities should make arrangements well in advance for availability of the books.

Bharat Bhushan Sharma

Pvt schools clearly accepting commission

As the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) earlier made NCERT books mandatory in all its affiliated schools, several schools have shown displeasure against the move, obviously for their own vested interests. Private schools are in dismay as there are other common norms for these schools to prescribe textbooks from other private entities to be inducted in the syllabus up to Class VIII. The CBSE has alleged that the schools are accepting high commission from private publishers to prescribe their expensive textbooks in primary and secondary classes. While the average cost of books recommended by the schools cost on an average of Rs 100-150, the average cost of NCERT books range between Rs 50-80, making it more easy to buy. Based on this profit-making scheme, most schools amass whopping revenue during the book selling season.


NCERT textBOOKS are easy to understand

The CBSE always prescribes NCERT books for board exams because only these books are sufficient for students to score well in the exams. Only these books clarify and polish doubts, concepts and give a thorough understanding about complex topics. NCERT books adhere to CBSE curriculum and most of the questions are generally asked from them.

So obviously it is better to stick to these books because it gives better understanding of concepts and this is not provided by other books in the market.

Anita K Tandon, Kharar

Admn should act against pvt schools

Most of the private schools have their own books from pre-nursery to Class VIII. It’s only in the Class IX they totally adopt NCERT curriculum. Even if the private schools adopt NCERT books right from the beginning they prescribe costly books by private authors in addition to the existing ones by telling the parents that for the overall development of the child these books are a must. For this, they also get some commission from book sellers. The administration can intervene and prescribe books of other authors which are of good quality but less expensive. Also, the administration can write to the CBSE for the cancellation of the affiliation of such schools, if after giving warnings the schools don’t stop malpractices and also the particular book sellers should be debarred from selling books for a period or at least five years.

Savita Kuthiala

Make NCERT books compulsory

As new academic session is set to begin buying new books for their children is no less than ordeal for parents. It reminds us that hardly any academic session goes without such tussle or other between private schools and parents. Perhaps it is all in the absence of an government effective mechanism and guidelines to private schools. Most of the private schools are affiliated to CBSE, which prescribed NCERT books. It is surprising that private schools ignore directives of high courts for NCERT books.


Everybody can afford NCERT books

The concept of NCERT books was introduced that all rich or poor can afford the cost of books and send their children to schools for studies. Later, many state governments allowed free books for girls or all students for government schools. But the parents of private school students bear the brunt of expensive books prescribed in their schools. The private schools hardly prescribed any NCERT books and added many other books which are hardly part of their courses but decorative pieces. Most of the publishers pay 30-50 per cent discounts to book sellers on particular schoolbooks, uniforms, shoes or other pheripherials one can find or buy at a particular shop only. The NCERT books are reasonably priced, with low margins for book sellers. If private schools recommend NCERT books, who will pay the school owners of their looted shares?


Bring govt schools on par with pvt institutes

There is a lot of emphasis and pressure on private schools to use NCERT books. One must bring parity in all respects between government and private schools. There is a lot of disparity in terms of infrastructure, teaching aids and salaries, to name a few. Private schools should be given autonomy of using the books of their choice. The results, the benchmarks that the private schools are setting cannot be ignored in terms of dissemination of education.

Garv bhupesh, Panchkula

School fleecing parents in many ways

Excess of everything is bad. Private schools have been looting either this or that way for a long time. The first faults are theirs who commit them, the second theirs who permit them. NCERT books are affordable and cover the whole syllabus in good manners. Most teachers and students have keen interest in NCERT books because the language of these books is easy and simple. Government school students are getting good marks / ranks with NCERT books. The parents should stop the craze of private schools. The higher authority must ban expensive private books. The parents should be allowed to purchase books and dresses from anywhere, not only selected vendors. Chandigarh administration must take strict and strong action against the dictatorship of private schools.

Sumesh Kumar Badhwar, Mohali

Parents should come forward with plaints

Private schools force parents to buy books from selective private book sellers at high rates. Some of the parents have to wait in queue for hours in the sweltering heat at shops. The parents of the children who are studying in private schools are double fleeced, one they have to shell out hefty fees, secondly by paying more money for books. The parents should come forward to register their complaints to the Chandigarh Administration so that the faltering schools are put on notice under the existing law. It is quite clear that nexus between private book sellers of the city and school authorities. It is necessary that NCERT books be made compulsory in private schools without any further delay.

M. R. Bhateja, Naya Gaon

Schools have become business ventures

Sadly, not to speak of professional colleges, even schools have become business ventures today. Most students of ‘elite’ private schools, even if CBSE affiliated, find it difficult to switch over to NCERT books for their school leaving examinations conducted by the CBSE. NCERT books are designed by teachers and educationists specialising in their respective field of studies. Detailed CBSE guidelines on teaching different courses of NCERT book studies are helpful for teachers also. Parents should prevail upon school managements to prescribe NCERT books from Class I onwards because their wards will have to take common competitive entrance tests for admission in professional and other colleges. Moreover, same NCERT books help students shifting from one city to another following their parents’ transfer.

Lalit Bharadwaj, Panchkula

Pvt publishers’ books burn a hole in pocket

Private schools once regarded as temples of knowledge have now become teaching shops. The Right to Education has been commercialised as never before. The tendency to prescribe non-NCERT books at exorbitant prices which are available in selected shops is making a big hole in the pockets of the parents. Many unaided schools enjoy the patronage of powerful politicians whose touts work as middlemen between schools and book shops. The hapless parents pay through their nose as they want the best education for their children. Besides, parents stand in queues for hours and wait for their turns leaving their other important tasks. Recently, the police had to be summoned to manage the crowd at a Sector 19 shop. Other than profiteering on books, there are other hidden expenses too in the name of the student’s all-round personality development. Some students identified as weak in studies are forced by the schools to attend extra classes or tuition at a heavy cost. The parents should be free to buy books from the source they deem fit. The schools indulging in this practice should be derecognised.


Schools should Keep books in libraries

It should be mandatory for all schools, private or government, to prescribe and recommend books published by the NCERT. It will firstly stop the loot perpetrated by the nexus of private schools and selected book sellers to fleece parents/students. It will also ensure a uniformity in education generally. However, to be effective, it should be ensured that the NCERT has highly qualified and incorruptible staff so that books selected are of high quality and fit for the purpose. If private schools want to impart some extra knowledge through extra books, instead of burdening the students, they should purchase and keep such books in their libraries so all students can read them without buying them . This is the only way to prevent the nightmare that parents experience in the beginning of the new academic session.

Bubby Soin

Don’t force parents to buy costly books

The nexus between private publishers and schools was revealed in Chandigarh. The parents had to stand in long queues to buy the expensive books from private publishers from a few established book stores in Chandigarh. The administration had turned a blind eye to this issue. The Education Department should immediately intervene and make the NCERT books mandatory for all the schools in Chandigarh. There should be multiple booksellers to ensure fair competition across the city.

Sunny Dhaliwal, Chandigarh

Make students go for extra reading

Extra reading is always welcomed but extra financial burden should be shunned. The administration should intervene to prevent this ‘malpractice’. The schools may be asked to keep good stock of books in their own libraries and make compulsory for the students to study during weekends and holidays. Students may be asked to make small notes and get checked up from the teachers. This will make the students to go for extra reading and also enhance their comprehension quality.”

NPS Sohal, Chandigarh

Students need reference books

Though I am against the practice of recommending private publishers’ books instead of NCERT books, I feel that a student cannot score excellent marks by just depending upon NCERT books. He truly needs some reference books by the private publishers. Reputed schools never get engaged into this shady business of selling the books of private publishers. It is only those schools which are run by single owners, go into such practice and that too not all. I am of the opinion that the schools must prescribe only NCERT books, but along with it an option must be there for the willing students to purchase the books of private publishers. But under any circumstances there should not be any compulsion to do so. With this policy, we can check the malpractice of abrupt sale of private books.

Bir Devinder Singh Bedi

Prescribe only NCERT books

There should be uniformity regarding education all over the nation. Private schools simply make money by prescribing private publishers’ costly books. Some chapters of these books or sometimes complete book are not taught by teachers. Only NCERT books should be prescribed by the schools.

Abhilasha Gupta, Mohali


Nearly 500 fire incidents have been reported from the dumping ground at Dadu Majra in the city since 2005. Frequent fire incidents have contributed towards the rising air pollution, leading to serious health consequences. What steps should the Municipal Corporation take to control the repeated fire incidents at the site?

Suggestions in not more than 70 words can be sent to [email protected]

#cbse #ncert #private schools

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