1 Historical Perspective:
The Department of State Educational Research and Training, popularly known as DSERT is the academic wing of the Department of Public Instruction. It aims at providing academic leadership in school education as well as improving the quality of education provided in primary and secondary schools in the state.
The DSERT was formed as a small academic unit of the Department of Public Instruction. It was then known as the State Institute of Education (SIE), and it originally started functioning from the northern district town of Dharwar in 1964. This unit was later shifted to Bangalore and the other academic units of the department of public instruction – State Institute of Science (SIS), State Educational Evaluation Unit (SEEU) and Educational Vocational Guidance Bureau (EVG), were merged in 1975 to form a single monolithic Department of State Educational Research and Training.
The Directorate of Text Books was attached to DSERT in 1983. Later the Teacher Education administrative Unit was detached from the office of the Commissioner of Public Instruction and attached to DSERT.
The National Policy of Education 1986 gave special importance to teacher education with special emphasis on giving quality training to primary teachers. In 1993 eight District Institutes of Education and Training (known as DIETs) were set up in the state. Subsequently DIETs were set up in all the 20 revenue districts of the state. In 2006 seven more DIETs started functioning in the state.
Similarly to improve the quality of secondary teacher education, 6 Government Colleges of Education in the state were upgraded to the status of Colleges of teacher Education (CTE) to provide both pre service and in service education in the secondary education sector. In 2006, the CTE at Gulbarga was upgraded as Institute for Advanced Studies in Education (IASE).
In the private teacher education sector, R V teachers’ College, Bangalore was upgraded to the status of Institute for Advanced Studies in Education (IASE) with a mandate to provide adequate and qualitative resource support to teacher educators and train teacher educators to take up education research. Four private teachers’ colleges (MES teachers’ College and Vijaya Teachers’ College, Bangalore, Kotturswamy Teachers’ College, Bellary and MLMN Teachers’ College, Chikkamagalore.) were also upgraded as Colleges of teacher Education.
The DSERT which was functioning from the old building of Government Girls Junior College, B P Wadia Road, Basavanagudi, Bangalore 560004, for the past several decades shifted to its own spacious new building on 100 feet Ring Road, Banashankari III Stage, Bangalore 560085, in the first week of February, 2003.
The new building with a built in area of about 50,000 square feet set in a one acre plot, has been constructed at a cost of Rs. 4.3 crores. This new building is quite spacious with a 30 twin bed room Guest House and a canteen attached to it. This facility enables the participants of DSERT programs to stay in the Guest House itself.
DSERT formerly was conducting training programs through the video conferencing facility at Abdul Nazir Sab State Institute for Rural Development (ANSSIRD), Mysore and the C band receiving stations set up in all the DIETs in the state.
DSERT has also set up an audio and video studio in its premises in order to develop TV based video lessons for the EDUSAT project. The educational broadcasts are being done twice a day from DSERT itself, where ISRO has established a KU band hub, up link and broadcast facilities. Through this facility, direct to class room broadcasts of video lessons are done to 885 primary schools of Chamarajanagar district and 885 primary schools of Gulbarga district.
This video conferencing facility at DSERT, has been linked to all the DIETs and Block Resource Centres (BRCs) in 202 educational blocks which have Ku band receiving facilities. Training programs through the video conferencing mode, which were formerly being conducted from Mysore are now conducted from DSERT itself.
The studio for the engineering college broadcasts under the Edusat project has also been installed by Visveswaraya Technological University (VTU) at DSERT.
In order to streamline textbook preparation, printing, production and distribution, the Directorate of Text Books which was a part of DSERT and the printing facilities in the Government Text Book Press are sought to be brought under one command under the Karnataka Text Book Society from June, 2006.
The Karnataka Text Book Society will henceforth undertake curriculum development, curriculum revision and will preparation, printing, publishing and distribution of text books, teacher hand books and other resource materials to schools, students and teachers.
2 Objectives of DSERT
The objectives of the department are:-
(a) To provide academic leadership in school education in the state,
(b) To achieve qualitative improvement in school education through teacher training,
(c) To promote Action Research in order to facilitate teacher development.
(d) To under take academic reforms in the light of policy changes by the state,
(e) To co ordinate at the state level, schemes of various state, central and international agencies – NCERT, NIEPA, UNICEF, SSA, RIE, IISC, etc.,
(f) To under take various projects in the field of education in collaboration with various agencies working in the field of education including NGOs.
(g) To administer teacher education in the state,
(h) To act as a nodal agency in providing in - service training of both primary and secondary teachers,
(i) To prepare teachers’ hand books, resource books and other materials for use of students and teachers.
3 Structure of DSERT:
1. Teacher Education Unit (TE)
2. State Education Evaluation Unit (SEEU):
3. State Institute of Science (SIS)
4. Education Technology Cell (ETC)
5. SSA Training Cell:
6. Adolescent Education Cell.
4 Important Activities of DSERT
Important activities of DSERT include –
a) Maintaining and improving quality of education in primary and secondary schools in the state,
b) Management of teacher education in the state (both pre service and in service education) both at the elementary education and secondary education levels,
c) Management of Government Colleges of teacher education, District Institutes of Education and Training and other Government teacher training institutions.
d) Preparation and revision of curriculum for various courses coming under school education,
e) Preparation, production and distribution of teachers’ hand Books, resource materials, training manuals for –
(i) Standards I to X,
(ii) Diploma in Education Course,
(iii) Special Courses like Music, Dance, Drama, Drawing & Painting, Sanskrit, Commerce, SUPW, etc.,
f) Promoting Science Education in the state.
g) Procurement and supply of Teaching Learning Materials (TLMs) and resource books to schools,
h) Designing and implementing in service teacher training courses in content, pedagogy, innovative methods like theatre in education, use of low cost and no cost teaching learning materials in schools, etc.,
i) Procurement and supply of colour TVs, Audio and Video cassettes, Computers, CD ROMs, laboratory and library materials, maps, charts and models to schools,
j) Conduct of training programs through teleconferencing and video conferencing,
k) Reaching the students and teachers through direct TV broad casts,
5 Organisation of DSERT
The DSERT is headed by a departmental officer of the rank of a Director of Public Instruction. The Director is assisted by a number of other officers at various levels in all academic and administrative duties.
The DSERT comprises of the following administrative units:
a. Teacher Education Unit (TE)
b. State Education Evaluation Unit (SEEU):
c. State Institute of Science (SIS)
d. Education Technology Cell (ETC)
e. SSA Training Cell:
f. Adolescent Education Cell.
a. Teacher Education Unit (TE)
This unit is in charge of administration of teacher education (both elementary and secondary pre service and in service teacher education) in the state and is headed by an officer of the rank of Deputy Director of Public Instruction. The Unit Head is assisted by two Junior Class I officers of the rank of Senior Assistant Directors. The teacher education unit looks after the DIETs and CTEs and all the pre service teacher training institutions (both government and private) both at the primary and secondary level. The unit also liaises with the NCTE, NCERT, NIEPA and Central Admission Cell (CAC) for academic and administrative matters.
b.State Education Evaluation Unit (SEEU):
The main objective of this unit is to improve the quality of school education and professional development of teachers. This unit is in charge of all the activities formerly conducted by State Institute of Education – Educational Vocational Guidance Unit. The various activities of the unit are - Publication of Children’s’ Literature, Conduct of National Talent Search Examination (NTSE), Conduct of programs in Evaluation, Population education, Adolescent education, Life skills and Health awareness, etc., The monitoring of the newly introduced Trimester System is done by this unit.
Previously an officer of the rank of a Deputy Director was heading this unit. The Deputy Director’s post was shifted to the newly created Directorate of North East Karnataka (NEK) in 2001 – 02. Subsequently the two officers of the rank of Senior Assistant Directors, work independently and report directly to the Director.
c.State Institute of Science (SIS)
SIS is headed by an officer of the rank of a Deputy Director of Public Instruction and is assisted by two officers of the rank of Senior Assistant Directors.
The main purpose of this unit is to augment the standard of teaching and learning of Science and Mathematics at school level, to develop scientific attitudes among teachers and students in daily life.
This Institute has established and supervises 224 Science Centers in the state (one in each assembly constituency). The unit also prepares and circulates appropriate teaching learning support materials for all schools, besides procuring and supplying scientific equipment under various state and national programs.
d. Education Technology Cell (ETC)
This cell was previously headed by an officer of the rank of Deputy Director. This post was shifted during the reorganization of the department, when the posts of Divisional Secretaries in the Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board (KSEEB) were created. At present, The Deputy Director, SIS is also in charge of ET cell. There are three officers of the rank of Senior Assistant Directors, one officer looks after the Mahiti Sindhu Program and Computer Education, the second officer looks after the training programs done through teleconferencing, Keli Kali and Bandani radio programs, the third officer looks after Edusat and other technology assisted programs.
e. SSA Training Cell:
Sarva Shikshana Abhiyan (SSA) had entrusted the responsibility of conducting teacher training programs of all elementary teachers in the state, to DSERT. Under SSA every primary school teacher in the state is to be given quality training for a minimum of 20 days in a year.
Since this is an important program, a separate cell has been set up in DSERT, to over see all the elementary in service teacher training programs under SSA in the state.
The Cell also monitors the flow of training funds from DSERT through DIETs to BRCs. The Cell plans various teacher training programs, prepares training modules with the help of class room teachers and experts in the field, trains Master Resource Persons and monitors the training programs being held at district and block levels in a cascade mode. The Cell also supports several studies and Action Research Projects.
The Cell has done pioneering work in preparing training module (Bahumukhi) for Multi grade – Multi level teaching in collaboration with Bangalore Urban DIET. The cell has further taken up work on preparing teachers’ hand books for teachers teaching in various Multi Grade situations.
The cell also coordinates with other offices and NGO s in carrying out all activities coming under SSA in DSERT – Radio programs such as Keli – Kali, Edusat, Computer Assisted learning, etc., The cell is headed by an officer of the rank of a Senior Assistant Director.
f. Adolescent Education Cell
The Adolescent Education Cell has been constituted in DSERT in 2005 – 06, with the primary objective of creating awareness among both teachers and adolescent children about development of life skills to protect themselves from HIV infections / AIDS disease, avoid risky situation drug abuse and practice responsible behavior. The School AIDS Program was either to conducted by Karnataka AIDS Prevention Society. This program has been transferred to Education Department and DSERT has been made the nodal agency.
The Program is funded by both UNICEF and NACO. The National population education project funded by NPEP, NCERT, the adolescence reproductive and sexual health in schools funded by united nation population fund have been harmonised in to one programme name adolescence programme. The Cell is headed by a Senior Assistant Director with the continued supported by Karnataka Aids Prevention Society. The Steering Committee is headed by the Secretary, Primary and Secondary Education.
The cell has taken up the review of existing NACO materials of training and plan for advocacy for state legislature media persons and state level heads of the department educational administrator Heads of the schools and colleges and training for PU lecturers and teachers.