Amid the row over Delhi Lt Governor V K Saxena’s refusal to the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP government’s request for the foreign travel of school teachers to attend a training in Finland, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Saturday flagged off the first batch of 36 government school principals for their visit to Singapore for professional training.
The principals will participate in a Professional Teacher Training seminar in Singapore from February 6 to 10.
Interacting with the principals, Chief Minister Mann said the initiative was part of the teachers’ foreign training scheme cleared by the cabinet on Friday.
Before the Punjab Assembly polls held last year, the Aam Aadmi Party had given a “guarantee" to people that the education system would be completely transformed in the state, Mann said.
“Today, the first batch of 36 school principals is going to Singapore and they will take part in a five-day training camp there. At Principals’ Academy in Singapore, they will learn the latest techniques in the education sector," the Chief Minister said.
“After their return on February 11, the members of the first batch would share their experience with their colleagues," he said.
Mann said the training would further widen the horizon of the teachers by equipping them with state-of-the-art teaching practices, leadership skills, creation of teaching-learning materials and audio-visual technology to meet the objectives of education in the post-pandemic world. “The path-breaking initiative would prove to be a milestone for reforming the education system in the state," the CM said, adding that with these efforts, Punjab would soon become a frontrunner in the education field in the country.
The decision to send the teachers for training to Singapore came when the Delhi government was locked in a war of words with the Lt Governor over sending teachers for training to Finland. The Delhi government’s international teachers’ training programme in Finland had hit a roadblock with the LG’s repeated refusal to grant permission to 30 teachers to attend the programme.
Delhi government officials said that LG had also asked the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) to provide a “cost-benefit analysis in tangible terms".
Minutes after the Punjab CM Mann tweeted about the flagging off, his Delhi counterpart Kejriwal took to Twitter to take a subtle dig at the LG. “The first batch of 36 principals from Punjab has left for Singapore today for training. This is for the better future of the children of Punjab. I request LG Sahib, to allow the teachers of Delhi schools to go to Finland for a training programme. Why do you hate the teachers and children of Delhi so much?" he stated.
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