Free training for 11 Lakh Unqualified Teachers through SWAYAM

When the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act was implemented in 2010, new schools were set up but qualified teachers were not available and unqualified teachers, including those with graduation degrees, were recruited to carry out the academic activities. Later, as the minimum eligibility criteria for appointment of teachers came into action, around 11 lakh teachers appointed at that time were asked to acquire their minimum qualification by March 2015. Further giving a final chance to these teacher, the RTE Amendment Bill 2017 was passed in the Parliament.

free teacher training
Teachers will be provided free training from 2nd October, HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar informed. (Image for representation only)

As per the amended bill, the teachers will now get time till 2019 to acquire the prescribed minimum qualifications for firming up their appointments. If the teachers fail to clear these examinations by then, they may lose their jobs. The same bill was earlier passed in Lok Sabha on July 22, 2017. The government has brought this amendment bill in order to let these teachers complete Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) and other professional degree.

When the government sought information regarding private schools, it was found that 7 lakh teachers lacked basic qualification. Then there are around 1.5 lakh (teachers) who have completed one year of training. Besides, there are around 2.5 lakh teachers still in government stream. So, there are somewhere around 11 lakh teachers in total who are without proper qualification.

For the same, the government will offer free education to these teachers through ‘Swayam Platform‘ beginning from October 2, 2017. The registration process for the same will commence on August 15, 2017 and will end on September 15, 2017. Under a scheme ‘Swayam Prabha’, teachers will not only be trained offline but also online and even through direct-to-home (DTH) television channels. There will be a moderate registration fee and course material will also be given in hard copy as well as in CD, while 12 days’ face-to-face training in a year has also been planned.

While replying to the debate in the Rajya Sabha, Human Resources Development Minister Prakash Javadekar said, “With everyone’s support, we will train 11 lakh teachers within two years. …A foolproof system been created to train teachers. We have taken support of all states.” He also informed the same through Twitter.

While throwing light on the evergreen topic, the poor quality of teachers and government schools, it was informed that Ministry has thought of five initiatives to address the problem. Firstly, the learning outcome for school children has been codified and defined, and an handbook been given to schools and a poster will be put in schools by month-end. Also, parents will be given the same so that they are aware.

To keep a check over the same, the members have been asked to visit schools in their constituencies and see if they witness any change. In the absence of systematic evaluation of children of Class 5-8, many schools have become midday schools. Hence the exams will be held now. Other than the census and election duty, no other non-academic work will be assigned to teachers.

Another Good News Awaited: a four-year integrated teachers training course is in the process of implementation and is expected to be launched soon.

This lays emphasis on the fact that education is not a political agenda, it is a national agenda.

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