The first Central Teacher Eligibility Test (CTET) will be conducted on Sunday by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
The Right To Education Act makes it mandatory for teachers recruited to handle classes I to VIII to pass a test to be conducted as per the guidelines framed by the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE).
While the CTET conducted by the CBSE is applicable to the schools of the Central government, such as the Kendriya Vidyalayas and Navodaya Vidyalayas, unaided private school teachers may either take the CTET or the TET, which would be conducted by the State government.
The schools owned and managed by the State government or local bodies and aided schools shall either consider the TET conducted by the State government or the CTET conducted by the CBSE, according to the guidelines.
N.R. Murali, assistant commissioner, Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, said that all the new recruitments to KVs have been tagged to the CTET. “The candidates selected after the first round of screening will now have to take the examination on June 26. Depending on their scores, we will take a final decision on their appointment,” he said.
The Chennai Region of the KV Sangathan has a total of 71 schools and there are over 15 schools in Chennai alone.
“Most teachers come with a B.Ed degree they obtain through a one-year course. Only the Regional Institutes of Education (RIEs) and universities offering B.Ed via correspondence spread out the B.Ed programme over two years. In that sense, the TET is a welcome move to ensure that good teachers come into the system.”
On whether the examination would benefit the teachers, P. Vijayalakshmi, principal of Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Chinmaya Nagar, says it might be useful to wait for the first CTET to be held. “We should look at the standard of the test and then see if the results of candidates correspond to their teaching ability in class,” she said. That will give the test credibility and acceptability.
State yet to announce
The State government is yet to announce its decision on when it would conduct TET. For schools in the State, this announcement would be important.
Teachers said that while such a test was welcome, an attitude to view children as individual learners had to accompany it.
The RTE Act places a lot of emphasis to child rights. If that has to be understood in the right perspective, teachers must have the capacity to look at children as individual learners.
“We see such a change in Tamil Nadu after the Activity-Based Learning (ABL) methodology was introduced in primary sections. Also, while continuous evaluation is being advocated for children, teachers' performance should also be judged over a period and not merely on the basis of one test,” said a government school teacher, on condition of anonymity.
“A degree is only a licence to teach. Teachers have to enhance their skills in the classroom, learning from their own experience.”