English medium at 1K govt schools by next year

English medium at 1K govt schools by next year

CONSULTATION TIME: Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy and Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara share a word during the Assembly session at Suvarna Vidhana Soudha in Belagavi on Tuesday. DH Photo/M SManjunath

The government will go ahead and start English medium in 1,000 government schools in the state from academic year 2019-2020 and has already started training teachers in this regard, Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy informed the Assembly on Tuesday.

Replying to a question by Umanatha A Kotian (BJP), Kumaraswamy said the training for teachers is being provided by Regional Institute of English, which includes video counselling facilities. The government has already recruited 1,715 English teachers and is in the process of recruiting 1,000 more, he said.

Textbooks, audio and video kits and e-learning units are being readied by the Directorate of Educational Research and Training, Kumaraswamy said.

Since 1994, the state has been imparting education through Kannada medium in all its primary schools, with English as one of the subjects. However, during the last few years, successive dispensations have been open to starting English medium government schools despite opposition from Kannada activists.

In a written reply to S Suresh Kumar (BJP), Kumaraswamy said there are 3,919 government schools with an enrolment rate of less than 10%. However, the government is trying to improve the rate by starting programmes to convince parents to send their wards to government schools, taking up enrolment drives, starting English medium and also providing incentives to students.

Replying to another question by H Halappa (BJP), Kumaraswamy said the government was in the process of recruiting 1,204 lecturers for government pre-university colleges through the Karnataka Examinations Authority. Besides, the process to fill up vacancies 1,512 is on, he said.

To a question by G C Madhuswamy (BJP), Higher Education Minister G T Devegowda said he would convene a meeting soon to fill vacancies in aided degree colleges. Madhuswamy claimed that 5,568 posts were vacant, some for the last 20 years.