Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas: A Visionary’s Realization

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By Education Today

Posted on November 15, 2022


4 min read

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Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas: A Visionary’s Realization

Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs) were the brainchild of Rajiv Gandhi, our former Prime Minister. The idea of opening a JNV in every district of India was part of the National Policy on Education (NPE), 1986. These are central government schools for talented children predominantly from rural areas. JNVs are run by Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Education (MoE). These are fully residential co-ed schools affiliated to CBSE with classes from VI to XII which provides education free of cost for its students during seven years of stay. 

For each JNV, there is a Vidyalaya Advisory Committee that looks over the matters of academics, infrastructure and general functioning of the schools and a Vidyalaya Management committee for budget preparation and proper functioning of schools. Normally, the district collector of the concerned district acts as the ex-officio chairperson of school level committees along with educationists, local political leaders, selected teaching staffs and authorities of the parents’ council. 

Eligibility Criteria

  • Admission applications are only accepted from residents of the district where the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya is located.
  • Candidates taking the selection test must be enrolled in Class V for the entire academic year in a government/ government-aided, other recognized school or in the National Institute of Open Schooling’s “B” Certificate Competency Course in the same district where they are applying for admission.
  • The age range for applicants must be between 9 and 13 years old. Candidates from all categories, including those from Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs), are subject to this.
  • A candidate is ineligible to apply if they have not been promoted and admitted to Class-V by September 30.
  • Under no circumstances is a candidate allowed to take the JNV Selection Test more than once. 
  • A candidate requesting admission under the rural quota must have completed and passed Classes III, IV, and V at a government-sponsored or recognised school, spending one full academic year in a rural school.
  • Candidates for Classes III, IV, or V who attended a school in an urban area even for one day during a semester will be regarded as urban area candidates. Urban areas are those that were designated as such in the 2011 Census or by a later government notification. Every other location will be regarded as rural.

Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya Selection Test (JNVST)

The selection process for Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya is based on a test that is designed and administered by the CBSE. The test is called the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya Selection Test (JNVST). It is nonverbal and is created to ensure that gifted young people from remote areas can participate without being at a disadvantage. A special effort is made to guarantee that youngsters from remote places can easily and inexpensively obtain admission forms. A sufficient amount of awareness is spread via Doordarshan, All India Radio, regional newspapers, brochures, Vidyalaya websites, and visits by Navodaya Vidyalaya principals and instructors to the neighborhood schools in the district. 

Given below are the topics that are covered in the JNVST:

SubjectTime Weightage
Mental Ability60 mins50%
Arithmetic 30 mins25%
Language 30 mins25%
 (Table 1: pattern of questions in JNVST, time allotted and its weightage)

Medium in which JNVST is conducted: Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Marathi, Mizo, Nepali, English, Odia, Garo, Punjabi, Manipuri (Meitei Mayek), Gujarati, Hindi, Manipuri (Bangla Script), Kannada, Tamil, Khasi, Telugu, Malayalam, Urdu. 

Other Advantages 

  • The social and cultural background of JNV schools are different from other schools. Here, students from different social scenarios mingle with each other Teachers, chosen from all over the country, live on the same campus and interact with students on a 24*7 basis.  
  • To promote national integration, JNVs follow a ‘migration’ process whereby two schools of different linguistic backgrounds exchange students between them for a year. 
  • Regularly organizes sports cluster meets and science congresses to encourage students in sports and other research minded programs. 

JNVs has consistently produced the best results in CBSE board examinations over the years. The pass percentage of these schools has been higher than any other independent schools, government or even Kendriya Vidyalayas. For otherwise disadvantaged students, these schools stand as examples for providing them with excellent education free of cost.