AP asks Union govt to not shift CBSE teacher training centre from Kakinada to Chennai

The state government is planning to introduce CBSE syllabus in all state government schools for classes 1 to 7 from the coming academic year.
A classroom with students wearing masks and distancing
A classroom with students wearing masks and distancing
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The Andhra Pradesh government has asked the Union government to revoke its decision to shift the Central Board of Secondary Education’s (CBSE) Centre of Excellence (CoE) for teachers from Kakinada in East Godavari district to Chennai in Tamil Nadu. In a letter to Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, state Education Minister Adimulapu Suresh noted that retaining the CoE is crucial for Andhra Pradesh at present, as the state government has taken a policy decision to introduce CBSE syllabus in all schools from the coming academic year 2021-22. 

Minister Audimulapu Suresh said that officials of the state School Education Department recently met CBSE authorities to discuss the modalities for introducing CBSE in state government schools from the coming academic year, and the coordination needed with CBSE authorities. At this critical time, the retention of the Centre of Excellence is important as there is a dire need to train teachers while introducing CBSE syllabus in government schools, the minister said. 

“The shifting of Centre of Excellence (COE) at Kakinada will upset and hamper our efforts and activities of introducing CBSE in all schools in the state,” he wrote, requesting the Union Education Minister to direct the CBSE Chairperson to cancel the orders to shift the centre to Chennai, and to withdraw the transfer order of staff. 

The Andhra Pradesh government had announced that CBSE syllabus will be introduced for classes 1 to 10 in a phased manner, to standardise the curriculum.  It has been proposed that in the academic year 2021-22, CBSE syllabus will be introduced for classes 1 to 7, and gradually extended to one class every year until classes 1 to 10 have CBSE syllabus by 2024. 

In a review meeting on education held with Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on March 31, Education Department officials had said that a special office of the CBSE will be opened in the state, and all government schools in the state will be affiliated to the CBSE board in 2021-22. By the academic year 2024-25, students of state government schools will write their class 10 CBSE board exams, they said. 

Earlier in 2019, the state government had passed an order to introduce English as the compulsory medium of instruction for primary grades from the academic year 2020-21. However, the order was challenged in the High Court by petitioners arguing that parents and children must have the right to choose the medium of learning, and the HC ruled against the order. The state government then moved the Supreme Court against the HC verdict. 

In the recent review meeting, Chief Minister Jagan also said that bilingual textbooks (with both Telugu and English languages) are being given to students, and that English learning would improve with time and practice. He said English will be introduced as a medium of instruction in pre-primary schools and Anganwadi centers as well. 

The Kakinada Centre of Excellence for Teachers was reportedly established in 2014, and has been conducting training sessions for teachers from both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The CBSE had reportedly issued orders to change the jurisdiction of the CoE in Kakinada to Chennai on April 7. 

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