'Teachers must grasp new syllabus'

Schools hope teachers’ training for new Class 5 and 6 syllabi next year will not clash with examination duty

The syllabi of Class 5 and 6 will see a facelift in the next academic year as part of the state education department’s plan to revise the state board curriculum. While the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) has got the syllabi in place, and textbooks are already being printed, schools fear the teachers’ training will clash with examination and paper correction duties.

Early next year
“The training schedule is not out yet, but we hope it is not in March-April next year, as the staff will be busy conducting examinations followed by paper corrections. They might have to skip the session. It’s important that teachers understand the changes well to incorporate them in class,” said Rekha Shahani, principal of Kamla High School, Khar. She added that apart from syllabus training, the education department also needs to focus on motivating teachers. “The BMC conducts workshops that go beyond the curriculum. Even we need to look at our teachers’ holistic development,” she added.

The Maharashtra State Board has consistently upgraded the syllabus of different classes. Classes 10 and 12 were first in line in the year 2012, but teachers as well as students found the syllabus difficult to comprehend. While many students said the curriculum was not taught well, the teachers blamed it on the lack of proper training.

“The education department seems to be least interested in conducting the training sessions. If students struggle with the syllabus, then teachers become easy targets for the department, as well as the parents. The education department needs to conduct workshops at regular intervals and ensure that teachers grasp the changes well to pass them on to students,” said Ramakant Pandey, principal of Bansidhar Agarwal Model School in Wadala. City principals have also written to the department to conduct workshops early next year, but there has been no reply yet.

Meanwhile, teachers hope that the training will not clash with either exams or vacations. “The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act had already increased our daily work, especially with Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE). Once the new syllabus is introduced, we will also have to prepare new notes and tests,” said Ranjini Salve, a teacher.

Education department officials said that the training schedule for next year would be released soon.

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