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Gujarat: New tribal university

Shabdasharan Tadvi, Gujarat’s minister for tribal welfare, formally inaugurated the Birsa Munda Tribal University in the tribal-dominated town of Rajpipla in the Narmada district of Vadodara. Addressing the media on October 14, the minister said the university will function from the premises of Adarsh Nivasi Shala for a temporary period, and later shift to its own 25-acre campus at Jitnagar village on the outskirts of Rajpipla.

The minister who represents Rajpipla constituency in the legislative assembly, said the new university will offer undergrad, postgrad, diploma and certificate study programmes covering arts, commerce, science, traditional art and herbal medicine among other disciplines.


Early childhood education breakthrough

Pre-primary classes will commence in all government schools statewide from November 14 (Children’s Day), Punjab’s education minister Aruna Chaudhary informed media in Chandigarh on October 26. The admissions process began in the third week of October. This initiative is expected to strengthen the educational system from bottom-up besides encouraging personality development of youngest students to equip them for the challenges of K-12 education, she said.

According to the state government’s Parho Punjab, Parhao Punjab (‘learn Punjab, teach Punjab’) project, children in the three-six age group will be admitted into pre-primary classes, said the minister.



Fake teachers detection drive

A special cell of the state’s school and mass education ministry terminated the contracts of four shiksha sahayaks (assistant teachers) on charges of furnishing fake education qualification certificates to become eligible for the posts, district education officer Sangram Sahoo informed the media in Kendrapara on October 24.

The drive to detect fake teachers was undertaken following suspicions raised in specific cases, Sahoo said, adding that the special cell had been constituted to cross-check certificates of contractual teachers appointed during the past four-five years.


Arunachal Pradesh

Connectivity focus advice

On a recent visit to Arunachal Pradesh, Niti Aayog’s vice chairman Rajiv Kumar cited connectivity issues as the critical constraint for economic development in the state and urged officials to draw up a New Arunachal Mission 2022 plan, said a government communique released in Itanagar on October 23.

After a meeting with chief minister Pema Khandu, the council of ministers and top state government officials headed by the chief secretary, Kumar said: “I believe robust connectivity will solve all issues of the state. Therefore, the state government with all its machinery has to singularly focus on this issue together with Niti Aayog for a road forward.”

He directed the state government to constitute a task force and evolve a clear-cut vision document and a time-bound action plan.


Salary-performance link regulation

The state’s education ministry has introduced a new regulation which links teachers’ salaries with schools’ academic performance. A government resolution (GR) issued in Mumbai on October 25, said teachers of government and government-aided schools will qualify for higher salaries only if their schools secure ‘A’ grade under the Shaala Siddhi quality assessment and improvement programme of the state government. For high school teachers, the eligibility is class IX-X exam averages above 80 percent.

Commenting on the new rule, Vasant Kalpande, former chairman of the state’s board of secondary and higher secondary education, opined: “Performance under the Shaala Siddhi programme is a collective effort, while salary concerns an individual. I am not sure if this GR will be effective in achieving its objective.”


Japanese invite to Super 30

The University of Tokyo has invited additional students from the highly acclaimed Patna-based Super 30 educational programme conceptualised by teaching wizard Anand Kumar, which trains students from economically backward sections of society for admission into the country’s premier IITs. Two Super 30 students are currently studying at Tokyo University.

“Today’s world is being guided by research and innovation which makes lives easier and science relevant to modern times,” Hiroshi Yoshino, head of India operations of the University of Tokyo said in Patna on October 23, addressing students of the Super 30 programme. Super 30 is quite popular in Japan due to its pioneering work in the field of education, he added.

Last year, Super 30 had sent five secondary and higher secondary students to Japan to explore the research work being undertaken there. The students visited universities, technical institutions, schools and research labs during the tour.

Paromita Sengupta with bureau inputs 

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