SHILLONG: The deficit school teachers of the State under the banner of the Khasi Jaintia Deficit School Teachers’ Association (KJDSTA) and the Garo Hills Deficit School Teachers and Employees’ Association (GHDSTEA) wore black badges during the official programme to celebrate Teachers' Day as a token of protest against the non-fulfillment of their demands. The programme held at the Soso Tham Auditorium in the city was attended by Education Minister Lahkmen Rymbui as the chief guest. Speaking to mediapersons after the function, Rymbui said that the State government was doing whatever it can to fulfill the demands of not only the deficit school teachers but also other category of teachers.
“The teachers are also one of the stakeholders and they should understand that when the Government has taken responsibility they should have the patience and recognise the constraints,” the State Education Minister said.
He also said that the State government does not want any stop-gap solution to the recurring problem of the teachers but was looking at a long-term solution.
Meanwhile, KJDSTA president Babu Kular Khongjirem, told media persons that as per recommendation of the Fifth Pay Commission and also approved by the Cabinet the deficit teachers should enjoy pension on a par with the government employees.
The other demands of the deficit school teachers are payment of salaries on monthly basis. The teachers said that presently they get salaries once every three months and it can get stretched to four months due to procedural delays.
The other demand of the deficit school teachers is the early release of the second installment of their arrears as recommended under the Fifth Pay Commission.
The Government had only released 25 per cent of their arrears in December last year.
The Fifth Pay Commission was implemented with effect from January 1, 2017. The Government had said that the arrears for deficit school teachers pending since January 1, 2017 would be released in four quarters of 25 per cent each. Khongjirem also said that the deficit school teachers wants the government to pay the Death Cum Retirement Gratuity as per the commission’s recommendation of Rs 10 lakh.
The KHDSTA president said that the gratuity is still Rs 3.5 lakh which was recommended as per the Third Pay Commission in 1997.
Teachers were also deprived of the Rs 7 lakh gratuity which was recommended by the Fourth Pay Commission in 2007.
“While government servants have been notified that they would receive the Rs 10 lakh gratuity, the deficit teachers should also be treated on a par,” Khongjirem said.
Earlier, speaking at the official function to celebrate Teachers' Day, Rymbui said that the teachers should actively participate in the various government programmes for the benefit of the students.
He informed that the Government recognizing the challenges of the students of the present generation has formed a task force to study the curriculum and to bring out if any changes are needed.
“Because we see that as of today the students is passively learning. The teachers for 30-35 minutes teach and the students just listen and go home and study,” the Education Minister pointed out.
He added, “We want the classroom to be active the teaching should be active learning where there will an interaction. We have to learn both ways.”