Amendment Bill on Edu Act contradicts court verdictThe amendment proposal in the Education Act aimed at restructuring the school education and resolving the age-old problem of teacher management contradicts with the verdict of the Supreme Court.
The amendment proposal in the Education Act aimed at restructuring the school education and resolving the age-old problem of teacher management contradicts with the verdict of the Supreme Court.
The Education Minister tabled the amendment Bill at Parliament Secretariat on Sunday.
The Bill has a provision of golden handshake deal for those teachers recruited before February 2011 which is against the apex court verdict and the agreement between the government and the temporary teachers’ struggle committee.
In 2010, the division bench of Justice Balaram KC and Justice Prem Sharma had directed the government to provide compensation to those who were recruited before April 24, 2006, the day when second people’s movement concluded. The agreement reached between the temporary teachers and the government in December 2006 also provisions golden handshake deal for those teachers recruited before the people’s movement.
However, the teachers recruited after that date were in protest demanding the same privilege for those recruited before 2006. The amendment proposal is aimed at providing equal treatment to all temporary teachers. The Bill has a provision whereby temporary teachers recruited before February 2011 can either compete for 40 percent reserved posts in total vacancies or choose the golden handshake deal which offers severence sum between Rs 100,000 to Rs 400,000 based on their service period.
The deal will be provided under three categories: those with service period of 5-10 years, 10 to 15 years and 15 years and above. Temporary teachers who fall under the first category will be entitled to an amount equal to 15 days’ salary for each service year, while those coming under the second and third categories will be paid one month’s salary and 45 days salary, respectively, for each year of service period. Although the MoE had decided to end the temporary posting of teachers by 2014, terms of temporary teachers was extended to 2018 due to delay in the amendment of the Act.
According to the Education Ministry, around 40,000 temporary teachers are still working under 16 categories, while around 23,000 permanent positions are lying vacant.
Last year, the Teachers Service Commission had announced vacancies for around 13,000 positions that became vacant after February 2006.
The Bill also aims at clearing legal hurdles for full implementation of the School Sector Reform Programme. If the Bill is endorsed by Parliament the school education will be categorised as basic (grade 1-8) and secondary education (grade8-12). The School Leaving Certificate Board will be replaced with Central Examination Board which will regulate the examinations for grades 10 and 12. The final school board exams will be held for grade 12 students.
Though the government adopted SSRP in 2009, it has not been fully implemented in the lack of legal provisions.