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Opinion

In Odisha, government ITIs record the highest enrollment in their history amid Covid-19; pvt left behind – india news

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For the first time in more than a decade, government ITIs in Odisha have reported fewer than 5 percent vacancies among the 18,000 positions that were announced in the current academic session to further the state government’s mission of “Skilled in Odisha”.

Officials from the Department of Skills Development and Technical Education said that in the 2020-21 academic year, about 96 percent of the 18,258 seats in 49 government ITIs have been filled so far, the highest yet. The figure is likely to improve even further as on-time admissions are scheduled to continue through November 20. By comparison, the 490-odd private ITIs in the state have 66 percent of the 77,184 vacant seats and many of the private ITIs report 90-95 percent vacancies.

Officials said the decline in vacancies in government ITIs is a far cry from what it was 5 years ago, when about 6,700 seats remained vacant. “We have never had such a good time. Had the Covid pandemic not occurred, we would have filled all the seats this year. The increase in tuition is a testament to the quality of education and placement opportunities provided at government ITIs. Government ITIs now have a better infrastructure in terms of well-qualified teachers and laboratories. The buildings no longer look drab and ITI students have their own uniform designed by the National Institute of Fashion Design, ”said Reghu G, director of the department of technical education and training.

Although the increase in the admission of government ITIs has occurred due to the improvement of the quality of education and infrastructure, the placement of 7 state government ITIs among the top 100 ITIs in the country in the list recently developed by the Ministry of Development of Skills and Entrepreneurship. it may have been a factor in driving enrollment despite the pandemic-induced slowdown. Apart from the 7 government ITIs, 4 private ITIs from Odisha are also featured in the top 100 ITI list.

Rashmita Panda, executive director of the Odisha Skill Development Authority, which provides comprehensive direction to various state government skill development initiatives, said counseling in secondary schools by government ITIs may have been one of the reasons for the increase in admission. “Teachers from many of the government ITIs go to local schools to motivate students to join the ITI. While government ITIs have been campaigning in schools to get newer students, private ITIs have not been as aggressive. Another program called Sudakshya that made ITI education free for girls has also boosted the enrollment of girls from 6% 3 years ago to 18% now. All but five ITIs have separate shelters for girl students, ”said Panda. Scholarships for children of construction workers also led to an increase in tuition.

The buzz around government ITIs started in 2016 when the government launched the Skilled in Odisha mission to provide skilled hands to the country’s manufacturing ecosystem. “The ITIs in Odisha didn’t have many candidates as students enrolled in ITI if they couldn’t do anything worthwhile after college. There was an information asymmetry. Although people in some districts knew there was an ITI, most people – parents, teachers, district officials – had no idea what happened there. Empowering ITIs and unleashing their true potential made good sense, ”said Ajay Panda, deputy director of DTET.

To develop the ITI brand, the government teamed up with Tata Strive, a Mumbai-based trust to deliver communication and other life skills training to students to increase employability. More than 200 teachers from 49 government ITIs were sent to ITEE in Singapore for training on knowledge, skills, innovations and best practices. Temasek Foundation International supported this training program.

While persuading city and town adolescents to enroll in ITI was part of the task, increasing placement through the central placement cell, as well as at the individual ITI level, has also been a factor. . Of all the students who are exiting government ITI, between 17 and 18 percent are getting placed. Individual ITIs like Berhampur ITI are reporting an even higher ranking. This year, despite the slowdown induced by the pandemic, 1,346 students have been placed in different companies. To encourage entrepreneurship among students, the government has started Nano-Unicorn funding under which each of the selected students receives assistance of Rs 1 lakh to start their own project, which they must return without any interest.

Owners of private ITIs said the drop in enrollment in nongovernmental ITIs was due to flawed government policies more than anything else. “Although Covid has charged a price on admission this year, the government has refused to extend the benefits of the Sudakshya scheme to private ITI female students. If that had happened, many female students who wanted to join could have done so in our ITI. Also, there is a lot of uncertainty about the exam as the final exam scheduled for July has not taken place due to Covid, ”said Arun Kumar Nayak, President of the State Association Pvt ITI.

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