Teachers’ rationalization creates chaos in Arunachal

[ Nellie N Manpoong ]
ITANAGAR, Sep 9: Ever since the rationalization process of teachers began in July 8 this year, reports have come out that the exercise has created tumult in schools across the state, with many complaining of the lack of relievers, and one school even going as far to give out an advertisement seeking subject teachers.
While the rationalization process may have been put into place with the intent of filling in the lack of teachers to schools, particularly in remote districts, the process has lead to some good number of teachers being transferred without any relievers to make up for their absence, along with other issues, which have been raised by several organisations in the past few months.
The Namsai unit of the All Arunachal Sarva Siksha Abhiyan Teachers’ Association had gone on to claim that teachers have to now travel 70 to 100 kms to attend classes. Since SSA teachers do not enjoy any HRA, it added to the distress of the SSA teachers.
The most shocking effect of the exercise was when the School Management Committee of Government Secondary School Pakke-Kessang in East Kameng district published a classified advertisement in this daily, seeking private teachers for Mathematics and Science.
Other area-based organisations also voiced similar concerns over the past few months and tried to bring the issues to the forefront.
Speaking to this daily, the Director of Elementary Education clarified that there are adequate teachers in all schools as only excess teachers have been transferred from various schools across the state.
“We invited people from the districts and worked out the process in the directorate and then only considered the process”, he said.
He informed that the recommendation process was started on norms that Trained Graduate Teachers (JT) are not to serve in primary level now, and only serve in secondary and upper primary levels. The norms specify that only Primary Teachers (AT) should now be posted in primary schools.
“From primary schools we have pulled out all TGTs considering the Pupil-Teacher Ratio (PTR) of 1:30 and we have posted primary teachers in place of them”, he said.
“When TGTs are pulled out from primary level, people are confused as to why they were removed without a reliever. There are sufficient teachers as per the PTR. Those teachers who have been pulled out from good locations are the ones complaining”, he added.
He said that the department is also considering the travel allowance of teachers who have to travel very far to attend classes. The government has exhorted for payment of travelling allowance.
“As and when they join their posting place, they should submit TA bill”, he informed.
There are 362 excess teachers in the Capital Complex and Papum Pare district. These teachers will be posted to districts which have limited teacher strength.
Reportedly, transfer and posting within districts is complete and some inter-district rationalization is left to fill in the gaps.
An order regarding the inter-state transfer will be issued within two to three days, the Director informed.
The department had also said that teachers who were to retire soon would be exempted from the rationalization process, but sources say that some teachers in Namsai, who were to retire within the next few months, were also transferred.
The Director maintained that those teachers who have two years of service left would not be transferred.
“If there is a mistake, we will review it. We have written to DDSEs to consider such cases.”
The rationalization process is expected to affect approximately 1,000 teachers, with the exercise being carried out in all 3,317 schools across the state.
Time is ticking away with the half-yearly examinations set to begin in November this year. Leaving aside the deteriorating infrastructure of government schools, the department now has to put all its efforts to speed up the process and ensure that no student is left behind merely because the department could not provide adequate teachers in the name of rationalization.