Teachers assessing SSC and HSC answer sheets complained that they are forced to correct as many as 250 to 300 papers each and that the board should reduce their workload before fining them for making errors in evaluation.
The Mumbai division of the Maharashtra education board recently sent show-cause notices to teachers who made mistakes in checking the papers, seeking explanations from them and warning them of a Rs 10 fine per mistake.
“We are doing this for the first time this year,” said SC Chandekar, divisional secretary of the board.
A little more than 10,000 examiners and 1,800 moderators are appointed by the board to check more than 30 to 35 lakh answer sheets for each of the SSC and HSC examinations.
Teachers complained that the large number of answer sheets they have to correct causes them mental and physical strain as they have to juggle this work with their regular school duties.
“We are short-staffed and given only 10-15 days to check the papers. Mistakes are bound to creep in,” said Rajesh Pandya, teacher, Fatimadevi English School, Malad.
Teachers said they are paid just Rs 2.50 to 4.50 per paper as remuneration and that they have still not been paid for the answer sheets from February-March exams. “This is the third year in a row that payment has been delayed,” said Pandya.
They demanded that the board exempt examiners from school work.
“There is a rule that examiners should not be saddled with other work during the evaluation period, but it is not implemented,” said Uday Nare, former board member, who is currently teaching at Hansraj Morarji Public School, Andheri.
Nare added that if examiners are fined, it is entered into their permanent service record. “The board did not implement this rule earlier as it was too harsh,” said Nare.