With more than 67,000 vacant posts of teachers in government-run Zilla Parishad schools, the state school education department has said that it will be a financial burden on the government to hire teachers on such a large scale.
In a letter to the commissioner and director of education, dated September 21, the department said: “Of the total state expenditure, 18% goes to the education sector, where the bulk of the fund goes to salaries. The department has called for the recruitment of teachers for a total of 67,755 posts, which are vacant. But the appointment of teachers at such a large level will put a financial burden on the government.”
The letter has sought data on teachers working in public schools, to submit to the finance department. He has also asked for details on the process of Samaojjan (adjustment of teachers) and data on schools with less than 20 students, as well as what steps have been taken to close these schools.
An official said: “The idea of closing schools with fewer students has been on the cards since 2015. However, no action has been taken so far. Now, the government is again mulling the idea of closing these schools and adjusting teachers in schools with more students.”
Many professors said this could be an indicator that the ban on new appointments could continue. One teacher said closing schools with fewer students will be a violation of the Right to Education Act, which insists on providing primary education to all within a kilometer.
“Most schools with less than 20 students are located in mountainous or inaccessible areas. If these schools are closed, students may drop out of the mainstream education system,” said a teacher.