Mangalore, December 17, 2013, DHNS:The objectives of Right to Education Act is not just reserving 25 per cent of seats to poor children in private schools, but giving full time primary education with equitable quality for every child. The central focus of the Act needs to be discussed, said Universalisation of Equitable Quality Education Centre for Child and the Law Fellow and Programme Head Dr Niranjanaradhya.
Speaking at a one-day workshop on ‘RTE Act 2009 for quality education and intentions of Karnataka Primary Teachers Training Syllabus- 2012 and challenges for the implementation’ Organised by PADI here, on Tuesday, he said that quality training for teachers is base for quality education. “Only trained teachers can create student-friendly environment in schools. Teachers Training Institutes (TTIs) have to shape up teachers in this regard,” he said.
Make teaching attractive
Professionalism and commitment of the teachers too counts in providing quality education, he said and added: “There is a need of making B.Ed and D.Ed courses more attractive so that more talented youth may choose the profession. The respect towards the profession is also a key in quality education. Many of the primary school teachers have to do some other job along with teaching for their livelihood. It stops their learning process and they can not reach the quality”.
Teaching is a skill and training is not just education before service, but it is a part of education. Unfortunately, teachers training system in State has become a joke. There is no proper guideline or aim for training and there is no follow-up. One can get certificates without attending the classes also. “How can we expect quality education from such teachers? The appointment of retired teachers is even dangerous in the development of education system,” he noted.
Quality education also needs infrastructure like drinking water facility. According to Sarva Shikshana Abhiyana (SSA) report, around 99 per cent of government schools in State have pure drinking water facility. But, the fact is that many schools don’t have pure drinking water facility and toilet facility. For infrastructure, the government used to release Rs 500 per school till last year, but that also has been cut this year, Dr Niranjanaradhya pointed out. The government had said that 15 per cent in whole budget is earmarked for education, but 90 per cent of it is being spent for the salary of teachers.
An education department official should work at least for three years in one post to plan and implement ideas, but there is a systematic lobby for the transfer of officials who are good and straight forward. The annual report of the education department based on examination depicts that the government schools’ students still can’t reach ‘A’ or ‘B’ grade. There is political propaganda behind this, to help private institutions.
The quality education and environment is still good in government schools. The Cluster Resource Centres (CRC) are just for namesake. They don’t have basic facilities, no meetings are being conducted and in most of the cases, they don’t know about RTE Act. In the education department, if some official conducts mistake, the first choice for official transfer is DIET which is meant for teachers training and academic excellence. CRC, BRC and DIET- level discussions on giving quality education and about implementing new methods are important,” he said.
Earlier, in the inaugural speech, CTE Principal and Department of Public Instruction Assistant Director (In-Charge) Philomena Lobo opined that there is a need for framing a teaching and examination method according to the capacity of students. “Good education doesn’t mean scoring marks. Teachers should change their mindset in this regard. There are 750 D.Ed students in State and around 110 in Dakshina Kannada alone. TTIs have to shape up them as quality teachers who can provide quality education,” she said.
PADI Director Renny D’ Souza said that though nine-year old syllabus has been changed for primary education last year, still there are expectations. To implement RTE Act or curriculum, there is a need of infrastructure as well as quality teachers. Active involvement of civil society is also important, he pointed out.
Dr Sukumara Gowda of Shikshana Adhyayana Kendra Puttur, DIET Senior Lecturer Asha M S, the education department staff, education scholars and students were also present.