Teacher education institutions may have drastically increased over the years but such a massive expansion has not been monitored well, resulting in corruption, chairperson of the National Council for Teacher Education, Santosh Panda, said during the seventh convocation of Tamil Nadu Open University (TNOU) held at Madras University on Friday.

“While there were only 1,215 teacher education institutions then, the number has increased to over 16,000. There aren’t fully transparent procedures in place, leading to complaints, corruption and vigilance cases. Now, we are trying to bring in transparency,” he said. He noted while there were policies for information and communication technology, and intellectual property rights, till date there was no full-fledged national policy on distance education.

The quality of distance education was standardised under the statutory Distance Education Council when it was under Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) and the dimensions of quality were always under scrutiny, he said.

“This [quality of distance education] needs to be seriously deliberated as to its dependent existence and full-fledged expression to take on the massive effort towards improving the quality of education and training in all sectors and levels,” Mr. Panda added.

Nearly 20,000 students were awarded degrees and diplomas. Minister for higher education and pro-chancellor of TNOU P. Palaniappan and vice-chancellor of TNOU Chandrakantha Jeyabalan were among those present.

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