Some Delhi University faculty members and students are opposed to the Center’s Integrated Teacher Education Programme “replacing” the B.El.Ed course, arguing that doing so will result in a significant lowering of the standards needed to train teachers for the classroom.
The school intends to gradually discontinue its distinctive Bachelor of Elementary Education (B.El.Ed.) programme. The only university with a unique, integrated four-year programme was Delhi University.
The Centre’s four-year Integrated Teacher Education Programme (ITEP) will be adopted by three Delhi University colleges for the forthcoming academic year.
Both teachers and students have expressed opposition to the course’s cancellation.
SFI stated that it is “not only illegal, but also academically and professionally irrational” to terminate a reputable course like the B.El.Ed. The university should explain why it is pressuring colleges to switch from the BElEd to the ITEP, according to a statement from the SFI.
A group of teachers claimed in a press conference on Wednesday that it was unclear whether the decision to replace the current Bachelor of Elementary Education (B.El.Ed) programme in eight colleges with the new course over the course of the following two years, as listed in the agenda of the Academic Council meeting, had been properly approved by the college governing bodies, the Committee of Courses, and the Faculty of Education.
Senior teachers from CIE and the impacted colleges, including JMC, Gargi, Mata Sundri, and Miranda House, spoke at the press conference, along with Prof. Poonam Batra (former faculty member, CIE, DU) and Prof. Anita Rampal (former Dean teachers of Education, CIE, DU).
“If ITEP is to be commenced in pilot mode, it can be offered in any college of the University of Delhi. Why is it being imposed in colleges that are conducting the BElEd? The real reason for coercing BElEd colleges into starting the ITEP is the UGC and DU’s unwillingness to appoint new faculty required to teach ITEP,” the Democratic Teachers’ Front (DTF) said.
“There are close to 50 vacancies in the education faculty teaching the B.El.Ed. After a very long time, the DU has advertised these vacancies. The imposition of ITEP will seriously impact adhoc and temporary faculty teaching in substantive posts for several years,” the teachers’ body claimed.
“The ITEP offers only one year of professional training after three years of general education. The ITEP’s imposition violates the laws protecting universities’ freedom to create their own curricula,” the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) said.
“We oppose the plan to eliminate B.El.Ed and replace it with a different course that will not adequately prepare teachers. The justifications stated by DU for discontinuing these courses, such as a shortage of faculty, are abhorrent,” it claimed.
“We urge the teachers and students’ body of DU to come together against this move and save B.El.Ed course and education of India,” the SFI added.