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Education reforms to give industry experts chance at full-time teaching

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The Times of India |

PUNE: A committee headed by Arun Nigavekar, former vice-chancellor of the Savitribai Phule Pune University, is all set to suggest a slew of reforms in higher education.  The panel, which has been constituted by ministry of human resource development, will take into account measures such as not making academic degrees compulsory for teacher recruitment and promotion of quality control in appointment of ad-hoc teachers among others. It will submit a report on the same to the ministry by January next year. “The committee for attracting and retaining quality manpower and selection of meritorious in the teaching profession was constituted by the ministry in July. Talks are on to constitute another committee to make Indian education more organized yet flexible in terms of credits, courses to be taken and time period to attain those credits,” said Nigavekar. However, he refused to divulge more details.

The committee was told to look at evaluation of the Academic Performance Indicator (API) Scheme as regards the entry point and career advancement, evaluation of PhD-NET qualifications for entry of teachers and to accordingly suggest a policy for selections along with consideration of the problems and issues related to ad-hoc and contractual appointments in Central Universities and recommendations to resolve them. Nigavekar said a PhD or clearing the National/State Eligibility Test are important but they cannot be the only criteria to get into teaching profession. “We have incorporated rules so it can be possible for an industry expert with extensive knowledge in his domain gets into teaching at universities and colleges,” he said. The recommendations also include more choices for experts or teachers from abroad to teach regularly without having to appear for eligibility tests, Nigavekar said.

“There are many Indians abroad who will have excellent knowledge in their area of expertise. A major problem we face is that even if someone is good in research or production, we are unable to understand the psyche of the consumer. We are unable to market our research and make it useful for companies or the society. This gap can be filled by such foreign experts as the atmosphere there trains them for independent thinking and more useful research,” he added. Nigavekar further said the country is expanding in such a way that banning ad-hoc or temporary teachers is impossible. “But, what we need is to make sure that there is no compromise on quality. Hence, the process of recruiting temporary teachers needs to be streamlined with checks and balances,” he said. The committee was constituted on July 24 this year and was supposed to submit its report in two months. “We are still collecting data. The report is extensive and needs to be foolproof,” said Nigavekar. We have incorporated rules so it can be possible for an industry expert with extensive knowledge in his domain gets into teaching at universities and colleges. – Courtesy


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