District Institutes of Education and Traininng (DIET) are facing manpower shortage in the wake of the State government issuing an order to shift senior faculty members to Government Colleges of Education.
The G.O., on the basis of which 31 lecturers of DIETs were transferred to seven government colleges of education, was necessitated for filling 600 B.Ed. seats after the National Council for Teacher Education directed the government colleges of education to stop admissions citing faculty shortage. The extent of shortage in government colleges of education was such that 18 faculty members with M.Ed. and Ph.D. qualifications in Government Arts and Science Colleges were also transferred to Government B.Ed. Colleges.
The DIETs that were already facing faculty shortage are now struggling to manage with the truncated manpower. On an average, each faculty member is entrusted with a block for conduct of in-service training. After the transfer was effected, the work burden has increased for the DIET faculty. “After the G.O.was issued, the work is extended to more number of blocks,” a senior DIET faculty member said.
Alongside in-service training, the DIET faculty members are also required to handle classes for students enrolled for Diploma in Teacher Education programme.
Due to the lockdown caused by the pandemic, the conduct of the programme was scaled down to one centre for a cluster of districts. “Erosion of patronage for the D.T.Ed. programme is not a cause for surprise since the government started appointing graduate teachers for primary classes. Unlike two decades back when all those who completed D.T.Ed. were assured of a government job, the scenario has undergone a drastic change. Getting through an eligibility test has become necessary. The course is no longer a sure-shot approach for a secure teaching job,” R. Karpaga Kumaravel, Vice-Chancellor-Officiating and Dean, School of Education, Central University of Tamil Nadu, Tiruvarur, said.
No doubt, the D.T.Ed. programmes have died a slow death. The DIETs that were started as per the 1986 education policy will remain relevant in the current scheme of things in education as long as they continue with in-service training, Prof. Karpagakumaravel said.
As per the New Education Policy 2020, D.T.Ed. as well as B.Ed. programmes will go through an upheaval, as there is going to be a single regulatory body in higher education.
The four-year integrated teacher training programme advocated in a multi-disciplinary environment would imply closure of standalone B.Ed. colleges, Prof. Karpagakumaravel said.
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