A school run by the West Bengal government has become the first state-run institute to introduce English as its medium of teaching, with minister Partha Chatterjee assuring parents that its fee structure would be within the reach of all sections of the society. Mr Chatterjee insisted that parents should opt for state-aided institutes, instead of admitting their wards in private schools charging exorbitant fees.
"Parents should have faith in the academic standard of the state-run institutions. It will encourage the government to open more English-medium schools in Bengal," he said.
The TMC government has framed policies to ensure quality education in the schools, the minister said Sunday.
The government has last month given its consent to 65 state-run and aided schools to introduce English as their medium of teaching.
"Charging Rs 10,000 for buying a laptop, another Rs 5,000 for an excursion - such trends in schools lead to unnecessary burden on parents," the education minister said, after launching English as the new medium at the higher secondary school here.
Mr Chatterjee also told reporters that the state government will put in place a mechanism to rope in professors of premier higher educational institutions to deliver lectures in the schools.
"The state has recruited 1 lakh teachers at primary and secondary levels. Add to that, we will arrange for exchange programmes between teachers of private and state-run schools," he said.
Coming down heavily on the previous Left Front government for banning English in primary schools in the 1980s, the senior TMC leader asserted, "We have to mend the damages caused by the erstwhile dispensation's decision. It will take time, but we will achieve our goal."
Talking about state government initiatives for higher education, Mr Chatterjee said steps would be taken to impart coaching and training to IAS-IPS exam aspirants.
"Due to a faulty policy of the previous regime, the number of IAS/IPS candidates from West Bengal is negligible," he added.
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