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Shortage of staff leaves HS schools in lurch

GUWAHATI, June 8: Shortage of teaching and non-teaching staff has left government-run higher secondary schools in Guwahati in the lurch. This is hapenning at a time when Guwahati has been flourished with a number of high-end private schools, colleges and even universities.

The trend is so ominous that the city residents have shifted their children’s’ destination from these government institutes to those corporate run luxury campuses seeking quality education.

Forget about those located in the remote districts, even the government-run schools and colleges situated in and around the State’s capital are now gripped with shortage of teaching and non-teaching staff, dilapidated premises and declined rate of overall pass percentage. Moreover, negotiating a space in the rank holders’ list has become a distant dream for these institutions. As a result, these institutions are flocked only by those students who hail from an economically underprivileged family.

Over the last five years, pioneering institution for girl education, the Tarini Choudhary Government Girls’ Higher Secondary and Multipurpose School has been struggling without a principal and vice principal. Altogether, the school is crippled with a shortage of 25 teaching and non-teaching staff. This year, in Arts stream, only 41 girls passed with first division, 40 with second division and 5 with third division out of 87 girls appeared in the HS exam. Notably, two subject teachers’ posts in Assamese have been lying vacant. It is significant that only 9 students appeared in science stream this year. There is also a post lying vacant against the Physics subject.

Similarly, one of the premier colleges in the state, B Barooah College is holdup with altogether eight vacancies in three different departments. There are three vacant posts in Mathematics, three in English and two in Political Science department.

There are also numbers of posts lying vacant at Kamrup Academy for the last 9 years.

While the private schools have been introducing newer subjects to meet the demands of the present specialized trend, the Ulubari Higher Secondary School is forced to do just the opposite as the School authority has shut the anthropology subject due to lack of subject teacher. Moreover, one post has been lying vacant for each, Mathematics, Assamese and Sanskrit.

Notably, for the last nine years, there is no teacher for subjects like Economics, English and Assamese at Gopal Boro Government Higher Secondary School too for which only 19 students have passed in the last HS examination.

When the shortage of teachers has already been paralyzing the daily classes of the Dispur Government Higher Secondary School for several years, the involvement of seven teacher in the NRC updation work has severely affected the last HS examination. Eventually, out of 79 students appeared in the HS final examination, only 49 have passed this year. On the other hand, there are already two posts lying vacant for English subject. Moreover, the school premise is submerged by rain water during summer.

Recently, the former Assam DGP Mukesh Sahay’s voluntary effort of teaching mathematics subject in order to compensate the absence of a permanent teacher at Sonaram Higher Secondary School drew attention and appreciation from across the state. However, the question remains, how many Mukesh Sahay will impart lessons to rescue the students studying in these deserted class rooms?
Now the speculation lies with the new education minister of the state, how he would mitigate the challenges face by these institutions for long.

About the author

Ankur Kalita