A five-day Foundation Training Programme has been designed to introduce the newly elected Sarpanches and Upa-Sarpanches as well as Village Panchayat Secretaries to the manifold duties and responsibilities bestowed on them by the new Telangana Panchayati Raj Act 2018.

The Program will formally commence from February 15 in the respective districts. Right from analysing the training needs to evaluation system through design development and implementation a Systematic Approach to Training has been adopted for this. The efforts of PR officials are really commendable.

The entire training programme has been designed by following the adult learning principles. All the sessions use different types of participatory training methods. Being a five-day residential programme, it is mandatory that the Sarpanches coming from Gram Panchayats must participate actively. The various sessions demand a variety of participatory learning methods.

Each session contains an optimum mix of group work and participatory training methods like interactive lecture, guided/group reading, exercises and presentation, case studies, explanatory quizzes, group discussions, buzz group discussion, management games and demonstrations.

Keeping in view of the special nature of the training programme and the necessity of having required number of trainers simultaneously at the district training centres, Telangana State Institute of Rural Development (TSIRD) has come up with a pool of well-trained resource persons.

The role of a Resource Person in imparting training is very crucial and important. Their exposure to Chief Minister KCR briefing will be of immense use. Even after completion of training their role as mentors and facilitators to a small group on a continuous basis will go a long way in achieving desired results.

The purpose of government is to provide services to its people through official and political bureaucrats. They are made responsible to implement the schemes, programmes and also provisions of Acts in their letter and spirit. One such responsibility that the Telangana State Government expects to be shouldered by the newly elected Sarpanches and Upa-Sarpanches as well as Village Panchayat Secretaries is implementation of the new Panchayati Raj Act. They will have to shoulder the responsibilities of managing the affairs of the Gram Panchayat efficiently.

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Many of the representatives have been elected for the first time. They would need an exposure to the duties and responsibilities entrusted to them and the powers they exercise. To enable them to reach to optimum level of performance they need to be exposed to Systematic Training to acquire Knowledge and Skills and to change Attitude towards the various roles and responsibilities. Knowledge gives them the Confidence, Skill gives them the Competence and Attitudinal change gives them the required Commitment.

Training is fundamentally a learning experience and learning is a naturally occurring process, which may or may not contribute to a person’s job performance. Training is systematic learning. In comparison to learning, which may also be random, training is being done for a specific purpose as well as quickly and effectively. Training is thus a planned process to modify attitude, knowledge or skill behaviour through learning experience to achieve effective performance in an activity or range of activities.

There is enough reason for government to train its Sarpanches, Upa-Sarpanches and Village Panchayati Secretaries expending resources that could be utilised elsewhere. It is not done just as an act of faith or to comply with the procedure. The objective of this training is to provide increased level of service to people with improved quality, better utilization of resources, not to commit mistakes, improved morale etc. In addition, the individual trainee would be prepared to cope with the Change and dealing with performance issues resulting from change.

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The change is in the form of new Panchayati Raj Act entrusting the elected representatives with enormous roles and responsibilities. Performance problems may occur as a consequence of such change, because of existing behavioral deficiencies of Sarpanches. Performance of Sarpanches is ultimately the factor that determines the success of the PR Act. The success of trainers and resource persons and also effectiveness of training will be determined by the future performance of the Sarpanches and other trainees.

The Systematic Approach to Training (SAT) and development presupposes four stages namely identification of training needs; plan and design; implement and evaluate training. Training Needs Analysis is an overall analysis of where training is needed in relation to improving performance. The purpose of this type of analysis is to identify training and non-training implications affecting performance. Similarly, job analysis and task analysis need to be done. Performance problems need not be caused due to lack of training.

Performance is influenced by three factors: the first lack of knowledge or skill where training is essential; the second is lack of organizational support where training initiatives are likely to prove ineffective and the third is lack of motivation due to failure to reward good performance, or to punish in some way poor performance. This can be addressed through training effectively.

A requirement following the identification of training needs is to produce a design brief. This provides a specification of the actual training that needs to be planned, designed, developed and then implemented. The more detailed the analysis of training needs the more precise will be the specification for the training.

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The design brief also takes into account such factors as, number of people to be trained, grouping of these people, their location, time scale, budget, availability of resource persons etc. Planning training is based on the Design Brief. Then follows developing training which is an integral part of training design. It is concerned with acquiring or preparing resource materials, such as handouts, visual aids, exercises, case studies, videos and computer-based training software.

The third stage is implementing training where the actual training takes place. Training one person effectively is a worthwhile achievement, but not necessarily efficient. Training a large number may be efficient, but it also has to be effective. Here in the case of training sarpanches the number of people who need training is likely to be large. Appropriate grouping with the size of the group needs to be done. Having spent considerable amount of money, the training should be worthwhile and hence it has to be evaluated. Evaluation can be a highly subjective process, using a wide variety of criteria.

The content and agenda of the training program among others include, concept of a Model Village; Telangana State Panchayat Raj Act; Leadership and Conflict Reduction; Structure, Roles and Responsibilities of Gram Panchayat and Standing Committees; Roles and Responsibilities of Sarpanches, Upa-Sarpanch, Ward Members and Panchayat Secretaries; Financial Management, Resource Mobilisation and Expenditure; Telangana ku Haritha Haram; Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS); Livelihoods, Role of Gram Panchayat in Economic Development; Agriculture and Organic farming; Self Help Groups etc. #KhabarLive



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