Private educational institutions must focus on being centres of learning: Partha
Kolkata: West Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee on Saturday said private technical education institutes should not turn into “centres of earning”, and instead focus on being “centres of learning”.
The minister, who was addressing a seminar on the spread of higher and technical education in West Bengal, said private institutes should give more stress on upgrading their curriculum and not only exterior looks.
“My word of caution for private institutions; there is lack of infrastructure in most places. While the state government does not want to interfere in the functioning of your institutes, if anything happens, the government is held accountable... You must think about the fact that most of the institutes are lagging in campus placements,” he said.
Mr Chatterjee said in an age when even government-run institutes like Jadavpur University and Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology are pitching for placements, the private ones need introspection regarding it.
“Don’t turn your institutions into centres of earning and, instead, concentrate on making them reach excellent benchmark as centres of learning,” he said, adding, a few private technical institutes were the exceptions.
The minister said India will be on top in terms of number of skilled manpower by 2020, and the state needs to prepare educated and technically-skilled students to face the challenge.
“From employment, now employability is the buzzword. All the institutes of the state must adapt for this challenge,” he said.
On the number of new schools and colleges having come up in West Bengal in the past couple of years, Chatterjee said since 2011, a total of 47 colleges and 23 universities, both in private and government domain, have been set up.
“We have already appointed 1,00,000 teachers at primary-secondary-higher secondary schools and 6,000 teachers in colleges,” he said.
Mr Chatterjee said the state government will set up a polytechnic institute in every sub-division and an industrial training institute in every block.
“We have taken a decision to this effect,” the minister said, addressing the seminar organised by the Sangrami Maa Mati Manush magazine of the ruling Trinamul Congress.
Minister in charge for technical education Purnendu Bose said the number of government-run polytechnics have risen from 40 to 80 in the past six years.
“There should be more industry-polytechnic interaction. I urge the industry to implement the Apprentice Act so that polytechnic students can hone their skills,” Bose added.