Now, English medium for teachers too

According to officials, it is easier to convert existing Kannada medium training institutes into English medium than setting up new English medium institutes.

After starting English medium classes in government schools from Class 1 this academic year, the state government has now decided to set up English medium teachers' training institutes as well.

At present, there are no such institutes run by the government. A decision to set up English medium training institutes for teachers was taken at a recent review meeting of the primary and secondary education department chaired by Minister S R Srinivas.

A copy of the meeting proceedings is available with DH. "For the current academic year, we will not set up new institutes. Instead, some five institutes which were getting closed are being converted into English medium, utilising the present infrastructure and staff," explained the officials in the department.

For 2019-20, four English medium teachers' training institutes will be operational — one each in Bengaluru, Mysuru, Kalaburgi and Belagavi divisions.

"Even the Draft National Education Policy stresses on pre-primary education. At present, there are no English medium institutes run by the government to train our teachers. As we now even have English medium kindergarten in government schools, there is a need for training teachers in English medium itself to handle those classes," said an official.

According to department officials, it is easier to convert existing Kannada medium training institutes into English medium than setting up new English medium institutes, as the approval from the finance department takes time.

"These institutes have all the necessary infrastructure and staff. So it won't be a financial burden. The department has just accorded administrative approval for switching from Kannada medium to English," said an official.

This academic year, the state government started English medium in 1,000 select government schools across the state on pilot basis and also English medium pre-primary classes in over 250 Karnataka Public Schools.

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