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State government's wrong policies will close down B.Ed colleges in Punjab
To standardise education the state Punjab government has increased the duration of B.Ed. course from one year to two years besides making it mandatory to clear Teachers Eligibility Test (TET) after passing out.

There are only two government colleges and about 140 self-financing private B.Ed colleges in Punjab.

With this decision, at present, about 75 per cent seats in B.Ed colleges are lying vacant, which has become a problem for the managements of the colleges. The decision has badly affected the admission in the B.Ed. Colleges in the state.

Sharing their views on the subject, Raj Kishore Kalra, Patron Punjab Education Reforms Committee and Ajay Thukral, President, Punjab Government Aided Schools Teachers and other Emloyees Union informed that the trend towards getting B.Ed training has gone down because of adding 6 months teaching practice in two years B.Ed course.

Moreover, those who have already qualified the TET test, which is only 3 per cent of the total passouts, are still to get employment. The pass-out students have no option except to join the private schools whose managements are exploiting the teachers by paying meager wages.

They further said, the fixed fee structure for two years B.Ed course is also between Rs.1 lakh to Rs.1.25 lakhs. There are many self-finance colleges who have constructed huge buildings but the admission of students is very negligible. In case this practice continues, the colleges are likely to be closed in the coming years because the Punjab Government has given recoginition to self-financing colleges, without going into the details about its impact in the future. The survival of these colleges without students' admission looks to be impossible in future.

The educationists said, the managements of these private colleges have engaged the experienced teaching staff besides bearing other expenses to run the day to day affairs from their own sources.

Putting forth a demand before the Punjab Government, Kalra and Thukral said that in case timely decision is not taken, many of the colleges will be closed in the state. The government should issue a notification well in advance that the students who appears for 2 years course of B.Ed, the TET test will not be mandatory for them.

The logic behind this demand is that a complete course of teaching including the six months teaching practice is arranged during the 2 years' B.Ed. course, they added.

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