Srinagar: The government has been telling us that it wants to reform and improve upon the education system in the state. The governments intentions, though may be unadulterated but what is reflected on ground says that all is not well in the state’s education sector.
The government has over the past few months issued statements that tell us that all efforts are being made to provide adequate staff in schools. However, most of the schools are starving for teaching staff while as teachers enjoy non-teaching postings in offices at zonal and district level.
Some teachers, including ReT teachers have been illegally deputed in state Institute of education (SIE). Such moves speak volumes about the seriousness of the government to provide teaching staff in schools.
The government has deployed an ReT teacher of Ganderbal district in SIE Srinagar who has been assigned to write press releases detailing about the activities that the department is involved in at various levels. The ReT teacher has been provided a separate room, a computer and one assistant for doing non teaching job.
This being just the tip of an iceberg, the rot in the department is so deep that hundreds of teachers have been deployed in DIETS, CEO and ZEO offices, and ironically all these teachers are assigned non teaching works in these offices.
What has come to light is that the CEO Bandipora hoodwinked the higher ups in the department saying that all the teachers were relieved from his office. However, the CEO has retained all the teachers in CEO office on verbal orders.
Same is the case with other districts where teachers are enjoying prolonged stints and are not posted in schools instead. In yet another such brazen violation another ReT teacher who is working as a newscaster with DD Kashmir has been placed in SIE office Srinagar. This move has been taken by the officials to keep him comfortably placed so that he gets a good chunk of news time space to promote the department in Doordarshan news bulletins and other current affairs programmes.
All these acts have come to the fore despite the Minister for Education announcing twice during the past two months that the Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir has issued instructions to the Deputy Commissioners of the division to exempt teaching staff from performing election related and non-teaching duties in the interest of the student community.
The minister has even issued an order directing the school education department for cancellation of deployments/utilization of teachers/Masters on non-teaching assignments. These teachers were asked to report for teaching duties at their original/substantive places of postings.
Kashmir division in particular has been facing a dearth of teachers in far off areas. In many cases the number of students is so huge that only a handful of teachers are being deployed to provide education to them.
The dearth of teachers is hitting the department so hard that the government is contemplating to hire teachers in primary and high school level on contractual basis so that the students community does not face any problems.
Kashmir is a place where the academic session of students is already being reduced due to one or the other disturbance, in such a scenario if the teachers are deputed for other jobs than teaching, the students community is all set to be on the losers end.