The Haryana education department has relaxed the conditions for a teachers' award for excellence following a protest by the teachers' union.
The teachers were demanding relaxation in criteria after no teacher from Gurgaon had qualified for the state
government's award, carrying a cash prize of Rs 11,000, two increments and two years of service extension.
To be eligible, teachers were required to score 70 marks out of 100 in an appraisal format. "We (the government) will lower the eligibility criteria to between 50 and 60 marks this week," Haryana education minister Geeta Bhukkal told Hindustan Times on Monday.
Meanwhile, in the wake of the protest, the government has withheld announcement of the award, which is usually declared on the National Teacher's Day, falling on September 5.
"No teacher from the district could make it to the list because the district did not possess the required infrastructure," the teachers said.
Of the 100 marks, on which teachers were asked to grade themselves, 20 were for innovation and use of computer
technology — an area where majority of teachers complained of inadequate infrastructure.
"The unions have pleaded with us to relax norms for the award stating the present criteria do not take into account the infrastructural difficulties that government school teachers faced. Since the idea is to encourage better performance, we will now consider those teachers who have graded themselves over 50," Bhukkal said.
"As we will reconsider all applications, an announcement of the awards for this year will take a little longer," she added.