Teachers take classes in schools without trainingMohiuddin Alamgir
Teachers in primary schools are taking classes without training on the new curriculums introduced in January this year, while only secondary school teachers in 19 districts have obtained training, New Age can reveal.
Students will suffer considerably if the teachers are not trained about the new subjects, experts said.
The new curriculums involve students from classes I to IX and include several new subjects, and major changes in various subjects with the intention of developing the thinking ability, imaginative capability, inquisitiveness and creativity of the students.
The National Curriculum and Textbook Board is responsible for conducting training for teachers and according to the board’s plan teachers of individual subjects from schools are supposed to receive training.
In the first phase, master trainers were supposed to get a six-day training course centrally after which the newly trained trainers would conduct a three-day training for teachers at the district level.
‘Curriculum dissemination training for master trainers for primary teachers has not even begun,’ the Directorate of Primary Education director general Shyamal Kanti Ghosh admitted to New Age.
A NCTB member said that 4,800 master trainers had been trained on the secondary education curriculum, but that the district level training had stopped in August after conducting training in 19 districts.
‘The curriculum dissemination training had to be
stopped due to fund crunch,’ SESDP project deputy director (Admin) Atiar Rahman told New Age.
The training, provided with the help of the Secondary Education Sector Development Project, had not been completed in most districts in the Khulna, Rajshahi, Rangpur and Barisal divisions.
According to the new curriculum, students from class VI to class X will have to take at least three new subjects —Bangladesh and global studies, job and life-oriented studies, and information and communications technology. Two new subjects —career studies, and finance and banking — will be compulsory for students of class IX and class X.
The new optional subjects include ethnic minority languages and culture for class VI to class X students and population and development studies, human resource development, human rights and gender studies and tourism and hospitality for class XI and class XII students.
The changes in the curriculum have resulted in changes in the contents of about 75 books. New topics including reproductive health, climate change, HIV/AIDS, autism and right to information were included in the new curriculum.
Educationists and teachers claim that about 2.45 crore primary and secondary level students will suffer as the teachers without any training will not be able to properly teach the subjects.
Siddiqur Rahman, who led a team which developed the new curriculum, told New Age that the purpose of creating a new curriculum would not be achieved if teachers did not get training.
‘Curriculum dissemination training is needed for teachers as they were not familiar with subjects that have been introduced and the content of other subjects have been changed,’ he said.
‘If teachers do not get training, teaching at the class room will be affected,’ he said.
Dhaka University Institute of Education and Research director Mohammad Jalaluddin agreed that the training was necessary.
There is also a concern that students will be forced to pay for additional private tuition.
‘If teachers were not trained properly, students will be more dependent on private tuition, coaching and note books,’ Institute of Education and Research professor Abul Ehsan said.
A master trainer told New Age that students in rural areas would be the ones who would suffer the most.
‘Teachers in the rural areas are particularly unfamiliar with many topics included in the new curriculums,’ he said.
Experts involved in the formulation of the new curriculums say that the three-day training programme which teachers were supposed to be given was in any case not adequate for teachers to be able to understand and teach students according to the new curriculums.
There are about 79,000 primary schools and ibtedayi madrassahs with about 1,69,57,900 students and 3,95,281 teachers.
In 19,070 secondary schools, 75,10,200 students are taught by 2,23,550 teachers.
NCTB chairman Shafiqur Rahman said that curriculum dissemination training for secondary level teachers in the 45 districts would begin when a new project starts, though he failed to state when that would be.
‘NCTB and DPE will jointly begin the curriculum dissemination training for primary schools in October, he said.
‘We are sincere about the teachers’ training and proper implementation of the new curriculums.’
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