National Education Day is celebrated annually on November 11 in India. From its history, significance to the theme, here’s everything you need to know about this day.
Why is National Education Day celebrated?
In India, National Education Day is celebrated every year on 11 November as it marks the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, who was India’s first education minister after independence.
Born on 18 November 1888, Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin Ahmed bin Khairuddin Al-Hussaini Azad was an Indian independence activist, writer and a senior leader of the Indian National Congress. After the nation gained independence, he became the first Education Minister of the Indian government. He served as Education Minister from 15 August 1947 to 2 February 1958 and died in Delhi on 22 February 1958.
Importance of National Education Day
The day is held to celebrate the work done by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad in the education sector during his tenure as Education Minister. In 1920, he was elected as a member of the foundation committee to establish Jamia Millia Islamia at Aligarh in UP. He also helped shift the university campus from Aligarh to New Delhi in 1934. Now, the main gate of the campus bears his name.
As India’s first education minister, Azad’s main goal in post-independence India was to educate the poor and rural girls. Other key areas he focused on were adult literacy, free and compulsory for all children up to the age of 14, universal primary education and the diversification of secondary education and vocational training.
“We must not forget for a moment, it is a birthright of every individual to receive at least the basic education without which he cannot fully fulfill his obligations as a citizen,” he said at a conference on education in the ‘India on January 16, 1948.
He also oversaw the establishment of the Department of Education at Delhi University, the first Indian Institute of Technology in 1951 and the University Grants Commission in 1953.
How to celebrate National Education Day?
Students in schools across the country can conduct debates, discussions and thematic programs on the teachings and achievements of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. They may also have cultural programs related to the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, or his life achievements.
In addition, schools can also organize debates or seminars to discuss the current problems and issues of the Indian education system. Through these discussions, experts and stakeholders can identify problems in the system and also find possible solutions to these problems.