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### Choosing the Right Path: Understanding Your Curriculum | Hyderabad News

Ahead of the upcoming academic year, discussions are underway among principals and parents regarding the four primary curriculums adopted by schools in Hyderabad. Donita Jose delves into the diverse educational aspects offered by each of these curriculums.

The Central Board of School Education (CBSE) has emerged as a popular choice among parents in Hyderabad. More than 260 schools in the city adhere to this curriculum, catering to approximately 3.7 lakh students from Class 1 to 12. The preference for CBSE is driven by the belief that it best prepares students for future competitive exams, according to educators.

Describing CBSE as an application-based curriculum with visible learning outcomes, K Suvarna, the principal of St Peter’s High School in Bowenpally, highlighted the curriculum’s flexibility and the enhanced opportunities for soft skill development under the National Education Policy. One of CBSE’s key advantages is its close affiliation with the National Testing Agency, facilitating a smoother transition for students from school to competitive exams like JEE and NEET. Suvarna also mentioned the interschool competition and collaboration opportunities provided by CBSE. Parents who have chosen CBSE for their children appreciate the curriculum’s structure, which encourages parental involvement in their child’s education.

Manisha Jesani, a parent of a sixth-grader, shared her experience, noting that since her son switched to CBSE, he has been bringing home homework and revisions that enable her to assess his school learnings effectively.

Moving on to the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum, which is gaining traction in Hyderabad, more than 35 schools are currently affiliated with IB, predominantly from classes 1 to 5, with a growing number expected to continue up to class 12. Academics praise IB for its high flexibility, allowing teachers and schools to tailor the curriculum to suit students’ capacities and set individual learning paces. Durgam Sandhya, head of admissions at Meridian School, emphasized that IB encourages a holistic assessment approach, evaluating not only academic subjects but also mental acuity, physical performance, and emotional intelligence.

Parents have noticed the positive impact of IB’s creative learning methods on their children. Preeti Puram, a mother of a seven-year-old, highlighted the innovative and stress-free learning process within IB, citing examples like interactive projects and field trips that enhance students’ understanding and motivation.

The Indian Certificate for Secondary Education (ICSE) curriculum, although trailing behind in popularity, remains sought-after by parents who value a concept-based approach over rote learning. With 90 schools in Hyderabad offering ICSE, educators appreciate its emphasis on conceptual understanding and language skills, steering clear of memorization-based learning. Mir Mohiuddin Mohammed, principal of Nasr School, noted that ICSE’s recent inclusion of multiple-choice questions prepares students for competitive exams conducted by the National Testing Agency.

Parents like Ritesh Waghray, an IT professional, find ICSE’s focus on languages and comprehensive syllabus advantageous for students in a competitive environment.

On the other hand, the state syllabus, with a significant number of students enrolled, is considered the most cost-effective and accessible curriculum in Hyderabad. Academics highlight its simplicity and student-friendly approach, akin to CBSE but more budget-friendly. Amarnath Vasireddy, director of Slate School, pointed out that the state curriculum aims to support vernacular medium students and offers a lower fee structure due to flexible affiliation rules.

Parents appreciate the state syllabus for its explanatory nature, breaking down complex subjects into more manageable concepts for students. Rahim Wadsariya, a parent of a class 3 student, expressed satisfaction with how the curriculum simplified challenging topics for his child, enhancing their academic experience.