(2) Evolving Policy Proposals:
The statistical information collected helps in identifying the gaps, weaknesses and shortcoming and provides the planners with a clear idea of the existing conditions. This helps the planners in formulating policy proposals aimed at accomplishing pre-determined objectives.
The formulation of the policy proposal requires an over-all view of the role of education vis-a-vis the economic development and the over-all planning. It should also take into account the complexities of a large country like India, the diversities of cultures within it as well as the regional aspirations.
These necessitate the introduction of a uniform educational system (e.g., 10+2+3 system) along with scope for regional diversities in the curricula. It should also aim at evolving policy decisions concerning rational norms of optimum class-size in terms of enrollment and student-teacher ratios at different levels and types of education.
Besides, policies concerning admission criteria (except the compulsory primary education level), promotion of students, fees to be paid on the basis of the principle of social justice, supply of text-books, equipment, devising curricula, methods of teaching, teachers’ qualifications and in-service professional development, methods of evaluation, medium of instruction, language policy and teachers’ salaries must be taken into account.
(3) Projections, Programming and Project Analysis:
An effective plan necessitates projections of all the inputs of the educational system – students, teachers, administrators, school buildings and classrooms, equipment and financial requirements.
Projections have to be made of the future nature and size of the demographic composition of population for a period of fifteen to twenty years. Since student is the focus of the educational process, projection should begin with the school and the college age-groups drawn on a yearly basis in terms of enrolments.
There are two commonly employed procedures available for scientific projections:
(i)The enrolment ratio method which is based on the projection of past and present ratios of school enrolment or school attendance into the future. It requires estimates of population by age and sex regarding school enrolment and/or attendance data.
(ii)The grade cohort method which is also known as cohort survival method. This method also makes use of the past and current enrolment data by grade for every school level and for approximately seven-year and ten-year data for primary and secondary levels respectively.
It also requires data on the number of new students, repeaters and those who pass on to the next higher class for every standard/class. Projections are calculated from the survival rates of students after taking into consideration demographic characteristics such as birth rate, mortality rate and migration rates.
Alongwith this, a minimum social standard of education needs to be postulated such as compulsory schooling for every child for a certain number of years.
Besides, provisions should be made in the estimates for the changes made by students midstream (e.g., switching from science faculty to commerce faculty) and other forms of turnover, adult education, literacy programmes, excess supply of products in a particular stream etc.
An assessment should also be made about the efficiency and effectiveness of the curricula, pedagogy used and criteria of admissions and evaluation as well as the changes required therein.
This is followed by programming and operation. For example, if 800 technicians are to be produced, a programme on the number of institutions, teachers, equipments, space, syllabi, courses, etc., is to be worked out. Here, one institution is called a project programming and project analysis involves the application of administrative and economic principles in order to assess a particular situation and establish an operational programme.
(4) Costing Educational Plans:
Education is an activity wherein the institution and the society bear part of the cost and the learner bears part of the cost. In order to improve the formulation and implementation of educational plans, it is necessary to understand the methods of costing education and the problems associated with it.
The unit costs of different types of educational facilities need to be computed. These costs are to be studied in terms of the availability of present and future financial resources. It should be ensured at this stage that the real cost of education is not too high so as to be inconsistent with the attainment of the overall plan objectives.
(5) Decision, Implementation and Evaluation:
A five year plan needs to be broken up into annual plans. Each annual plan is scrutinized, discussed and criticized in relation to a review of previous year’s strengths, weaknesses and achievements. At this stage, the necessary conditions for effective implementation of the programme need to be created. Thereafter, the actual operations take place.
At the end of the plan, evaluation is done in terms of the extent to which the objectives of the plan have been accomplished in an effective and efficient manner.