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District Institutes of Education and Training (DIETs) Background The DIETs were envisioned in the National Policy of Education, 1986, and were created by the Government of India, Ministry of Human Resource Development in the early 1990s to strengthen elementary education and support the decentralization of education to the district level, under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme on Teacher Education, and following the Guidelines suggested in the ‘Pink Book' (Government of India, 1989).

The DIET is located at an important level of decentralization - the District. However, they have remained marginal to the key activities of the States in teacher professional development and school improvement; they are inadequately integrated into the State’s systems. The multiple tasks linked to departmental programmes with different foci draw the DIET in different directions and produce divergent institutional goals. Furthermore, outdated institutional structures also create expectations regarding work which are not realized or realizable, and contribute to a sense of dysfunctionality. Administrative tasks assigned to the DIET, although they keep the DIET connected to the wider state machinery, take away institutional time and energy in routinised work that lack academic purpose. There is therefore a need to reformulate the vision of this institution so that DIETs can contribute to fulfilling the mandate under the RTE Act in matters relating to continuous teacher professional development, school support and improvement. Institutional Vision and Identity

The vision for the DIETs that was articulated in the NPE 1986(modified in 1992) was for a strong district institution that would support pre-service and in- service work with teachers (clause 9.6) at the elementary education level. “Within a multi-level framework of educational development, central, state, district and local agencies will participate in planning, co-ordination, monitoring and evaluation” (clause 10.6).