TIMES NEWS NETWORK, November 06,2017

Source: The Times of India

Pune : Following Saturday’s statewide protest by schoolteachers, education minister Vinod Tawde on Sunday said the government will look into their demands.

Chief among the demands were a reduction of the online data updation responsibilities and lessening of the burden of implementing the mid-day meal scheme.

“An audit of online work being done by teachers will be conducted by education officials and a report would be submitted to the department, based on which appropriate action would be taken,“ Tawde said. “The audit will cover the online work that teachers have to do on daily basis. It will study the time spent by teachers, how many teachers are involved, the nature of work and other related issues. The report will be generated in 8-10 days,“ Tawde added. During the protest, the te achers complained that a majority of their time is consumed in uploading baseline test scores and updating school details for the Pragat Shaikshanik Maharashtra programme and other administrative work. They said this was eating into their primary responsibility -teaching.

For those from rural areas, poor Internet connectivi ty means time spent in cybercafes. Tawde said the government is willing to extend the deadline for those who are facing connectivity issues in rural areas. “However. to avoid giving the actual roll count, some schools are refraining from filing up the data and making noise. We are connecting Aadhaar numbers of the students important details. This is a one-time job. Once the data is updated, it will not be a regular thing except for those who are newly admitted to Standard I,“ Tawde said, adding that only 10-15% of the schools in the state are to update the data.

He also said Aadhaar cards were not mandatory for std X and XII state board students, but advised them to enrol for one as, in the future, government scholarships would be directly transferred to linked accounts. However, he maintained that not having Aaadhar will not stop them from appearing for the boards.

On teacher transfer issues in Zilla Parishad schools, Tawde said the problem lay mainly with the rural development department of the state government, and had no bearing on the education department. However, Tawde said that the education department will intervene if necessary and see to it that the transfers are done in a just manner, without inconveniencing teachers.