Promising to improve the quality of teaching of mathematics and science in schools, the state school education department launched a virtual training programme for 28,000 teachers on Thursday.
Teachers of Classes 8 to 10 in aided schools across the state will benefit from the programme.
The training will be conducted online, using special software developed by Amrita University and Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT-B). The software, Amrita Virtual Interactive Education World (A-VIEW) is also being used for training teachers of the University of Mumbai.
Rajendra Darda, school education minister, who inaugurated the training programme, said that the need for training teachers in English, mathematics and science was felt because of the poor performance of students in Class 12 Higher Secondary Certificate examination (HSC) this year.
Only 14% out of 92% students passing the HSC physics paper secured a first class, while only 18% students out of the 90% who passed scored a first class in chemistry.
In biology and mathematics, 21% of passing students secured above 60%.
“The old ways of training teachers were not showing results, as often the resource people training them were not up to the mark,” said Darda.
The new method of training eliminates the resource person in between and ensures that experts directly train the teachers through video conferencing.
Six master trainers have been selected from among the teachers, who will deliver training lectures online using the A-VIEW software to other teachers assembled across eight centres in the state.
Set ups for video conferencing have been created in Kandivli, Poisar, Navi Mumbai in the city. Kolhapur and Ratnagiri are the other centres in the state.
The education department has requested other universities across the state to upgrade their infrastructure, to create more such centres.
The state has set aside Rs100 to 200 crore for the training programmes.
This step is among the many taken by the state after it revised its training policy recently.
Already, with the help of the British Council, English language skills of nearly 87,000 teachers in primary and secondary schools are being improved.