The Kerala Education Bill: Background to Policy.
Following is the full text of a Press release issued on the 19th August 1957.
The aim and purpose of the Education Bill now on the anvil of the Kerala Legislative Assembly have been explained in detail by the Minister for Education himself and by his colleagues in the Council of Ministers, besides having been clarified in official hand-outs to the Press and utterances by impartial leaders of public opinion. There has, however, been a continuing campaign against the Bill, mainly from a section of the people who seems to feel that their particular sectional and denominational interests and rights should be protected even against the common good of the community at large in so far as educational activities are concerned. Other interests, which have no stake in the matter, except prospects of political profit, have been fanning the flames of the controversy. Opponents of the Bill are now attempting to mislead opinion outside the State, on the basis of the false allegation that the Bill is totalitarian in character, that it is expropriating in intent and that its ulterior purpose is to taint the content of education in the State according to a certain political ideology. The false propaganda is, indeed, so warped as to magnify and destort the present Education Minister’s personal experiences as a teacher in a private-owned educational institution and plausibly to conclude that the entire Education Bill is an act of vengeance on the Private Management of schools and colleges.
While the solid support which the thoughtful, unbiased and altruistic sections of the people have, from the very start, given to Governments measure of educational reform is greatly reassuming, it has become necessary, in order to counter the baneful effects of high-powered propaganda, both inside the State and outside, to reiterate the rationale of the Education Bill and to appeal to the people, once again, to study the Bill in detail and help to create that climate of understanding and accommodation which is necessary for every public reform.
Finally, it is the duty of all citizens to see that; the Education Bill now before the Assembly is discussed in a calm and peace atmosphere devoid of sectarian passions or political pressures so that a peace of legislation; which would; affect the lives of thousands of teachers and the entire generations, of students, now and in the future, is discussed, shaped and finalised by the chosen representatives of the people.