Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing

The education ministry (MoE) yesterday announced several reforms to reduce overlapping and duplication of functions and ensure better resource optimisation. 

The reforms also aim to enhance efficiency, effectiveness, coordination and collaboration in delivering the functions and public services. 

These reforms, meanwhile, are implemented as the first phase of the re-organisation of the ministry approved by the government. 

Under this reform exercise, the ministry said the department of school education (DSE) and the department of curriculum and professional development (DCPD) will be merged as DSE, the education ministry announced yesterday. 

The new DSE has five divisions that are School Curriculum Division (SCD), Teacher Development Division (TDD), Education Leadership Division (ELD), STEM and Innovation Division (SID), Early Child Care (ECCD) and Special Education Needs Division (SEND) and School Liaison and Coordination Division (SLD). 

A notification said, “An independent ex-officio Curriculum and Technical Advisory Board will be set up to ensure independence in making national curriculum and related decisions.”

The Non-Formal and Continuing Education Division under the Department of Adult and Higher Education (DAHE) and the School Feeding and Nutrition Division under the DSE are merged with the Department of Youth and Sports and renamed as the Department of Education Programmes (DEP). 

This new department will have five divisions that are Counselling Division, Programme Coordination (NFE, Disaster, School Infra), Scouting and Sports Division (SSD), Health and Wellbeing Division (HWD), and Women and Children’s Affairs Division (WCAD) – that are subsumed roles of NCWCs. 

The Education Monitoring Division (EMD) from the DSE will be placed under the secretariat and will oversee the monitoring and evaluation functions of all services delivered by all the departments. 

Further, DAHE will be included as a unit under the Policy and Planning Division (PPD) of the ministry.

Similarly, the National Commission for UNESCO under the secretariat will be placed as a unit under PPD. 

“BCSEA will function closely with the DSE and report to the secretary of the education ministry. It will avail administrative and financial services from the Division of Support Services (DSS),” the notification said.  “An independent ex-officio Examination Board will be set up to ensure independence in making national examination-related decisions.”

National Commission for Education (NCE) will be set up. This will be an ex-officio body with members drawn from the entire ecosystem of education and be the cradle of any policies related to education.