Mysuru’s iconic women teachers’ institute faces closure

The 94-year-old government Maharani’s Women Teachers’ Training Institute, the first such institute for women, established by Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar in 1928 here, is facing the threat of closure due to ‘poor admissions’.

But the admissions have picked up in the current academic year (2022-23), Principal Nanjundaswamy claims.

It is said to be the only government teacher training institute for women, with English as a medium of instruction. Students here are mostly from a rural background.

The institute, on Narayana Shastri Road, has trained thousands of students to become teachers. Those completing degree courses pursue diploma in teaching here.

Nanjundaswamy said there were suggestions to close the institute as the admissions were low over the past few years.

“The demand has increased as degree students completing Diploma in Elementary Education (DELEd) courses are eligible to teach students of classes 6 to 8. The number of admissions too has increased. Currently, there are 59 students in first year and 19 students in second year. As the government has promised to recruit teachers every year, admissions are expected to go up further. As the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 has recommended a student-teacher ratio of 30:1, there is a need for more teachers,” he said.

There is no shortage of lecturers in the college. In all, there are 15 staff members, including the principal. There are 11 lecturers, two for craft and one for physical education.

The staff have launched a campaign, highlighting the legacy of the institute and training provided here. They distributed pamphlets across the district, to save the institute from closure.

All efforts are on to ensure that the institute isn’t closed and a memorandum has been submitted to the higher authorities in this regard.

Though the higher authorities have given assurances to this effect, there is no official order to guarantee the same, Nanjundaswamy said.

If such institutes are closed, there will be no government institute left to conduct professional courses for basic level education as proposed in NEP 2020, said Kannada activist Arvind Sharma.

The students from backward and minority communities have to spend more to study in private colleges. Thus, the institute should not be closed, he said.

The hostel for students of the college at Ballal Circle is also in a dilapidated condition, Sharma said.


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