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Quality of education system cannot exceed the quality of teacher educators!
Most educators and managers feel that teachers are central to any educational reform and responsible for quality of education or lack of it. According to the Chikondi Mpokosa, author of a study report on managing teacher, "The quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers."

Furthermore, Mpokosa holds that poor quality of training of all types- pre-service, in-service and continuing professional development- for teachers, head teachers, teacher educators and administrative staff is the main cause of poor quality of education on the whole.

Moreover, there is hardly any meaningful professional dialogue between teachers and policymakers when a reform in education is initiated. This often results in low motivation and morale of teachers and school leaders for implementing a reform, argues Mpokosa.

He adds that any quality improvement programme must be central to proper development of teachers through pre-service training; in-service training; integrated approaches to school-based management; cluster approaches to continuing education and training of both teachers and teacher-educators.

While stressing the need for improving the quality of teacher education first and foremost, Mini Shrinivasan, a freelancer, says, "It is also evident that teachers are not in fact being trained for the task at hand - developing and nurturing young minds. From the teacher training curriculum to the field work (or lack of it) to the apprentice/ induction period (or lack of it), nothing is preparing them for anything better than mechanically imparting 'gyan' (information).

Where is the inductive, research-and-observation based constructive teacher education that would equip them to fulfill the lofty aims of RTE, CCE, and CFS?" Here RTE stands for Right to Education; CCE for Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation; and CFS for Children's Film Society.

M. Mukhtar Alam, Senior State Advocacy Coordinator, National Campaign for Nutrition for Dignity, Delhi, says, "Education, nutrition, protection and development of children cannot be compromised in the rural and urban areas. We cannot have inclusive quality education without teachers (of right kind). We need to work more on empowering communities, engaging the government in order to fill all the administrative and policy gaps. "

My own experience of interaction with teacher training institutes has revealed that most teacher educators are poor role models of teaching, who have hardly prepared a lesson plan themselves and demonstrated what quality teaching is all about. They teach through poorly delivered lectures while the prospective teachers require a lot preparation in skills, techniques, methods, management, processes and attitudes.

Therefore, all school reforms should begin by improving the quality of teacher educators. So my hypothesis is that "The quality of education system cannot exceed the quality of teacher educators and higher education teachers."

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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