Schools upgraded but no specialist teachers deputed
Despite the passage of more than two years, the J&K’s school education department is yet to appoint subject specific teachers for the upgraded Government Middle schools, leaving the educational institutions teacher deficient.
The teachers were supposed to be recruited under centrally sponsored scheme- Rashtriya Madhiyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) for the Middle Schools which were upgraded to the level of High Schools in 2014 under the scheme.
“The then government was supposed to engage these subject specific teachers in these schools to cater to the student demands and provide them specialised teachers,” a top official said.
He said around 110 Government Middle Schools (GMS) were upgraded to High School level in 2014 for which government had to recruit five subject specific teachers for each schools, but the process is yet to begin.
“Two years have passed but these upgraded schools didn’t get any subject specific teachers which has adversely affected the academics in these schools,” the official said.
Interestingly, the initiative was taken to in a bid to improve academic standards in the government schools for which the candidates having Post Graduation in a particular subject with B.Ed degree were eligible. “The candidates having 50 percent marks in their post-graduation were eligible for the post,” the official said.
He however, said the department in recent past has advertised the 550 posts of subject specific teachers for the 110 upgraded schools.
“The process was started two years after the schools were upgraded,” the official said.
Interestingly the initiative to appoint subject specific teachers was started during the previous National Conference led coalition government wherein the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) agreed to provide monthly wages at the rate of Rs 27160 and asked the state government to provide the specialised teachers in the schools yearning for the staff.
However, the previous government promoted the in-service teachers to master grade and elevated their pay scale to over Rs 46000.
The elevation of pay scale resulted in additional requirement of funds for the salaries of these masters. “But MHRD refused to pay the additional amount which required to pay the wages of promoted in-service teachers resulting in extra burden on the state government,” the official said.
Also, the promotion of in-service teachers didn’t serve purpose of providing subject specific teachers to the upgraded schools. “The in-service teachers after their promotion were not shifted to the schools which were in need of subject specific teachers. Besides, all the promoted teachers had not any post-graduation degree in any particular subject due to which their promotion couldn’t serve the purpose,” the official said.
Meanwhile, a top official in school education department said the government is mulling to review the scheme and streamline engagement of contractual teachers.
“The government has started the process to advertise posts for the engagement of subject specific teachers on contractual basis and the earlier process wherein in-service teachers were promoted and tasked to teach specific subjects will be reviewed as well,” the official said.