Mumbai schools have been given more time to register details of students and teachers on the database being created by the government. Schools in the city will have to fill in the information between September 12 and 15, the education department has said.
Schools were struggling to meet the earlier deadline of August 15 as the government website for the database used to crash frequently. All schools compulsorily had to finish the process for students and teachers from Classes 1 to 12. The latest order that Mumbai schools do not have to fill in the data now for the Systematic Administrative Reforms for Achievement of Learning (SARAL) database, has come as a relief to schools.
The state school education department has now released a new schedule in which separate deadlines have been given to the eight divisions in the state. “We have decided to keep different dates for every division to prevent load on the server,” said Nand Kumar, principal secretary of the department. “This was needed as the website was crashing if more than 10,000 people logged on to it at the same time.”
Kumar added that the government is also thinking about installing district-wise servers so that such problems do not occur in the future. “The database is going to be very important to us for child tracking, monitoring quality of education and keeping an online record of school assessments,” said Kumar.
Some of the school principals were relieved by the extension. “Our non-teaching and teaching staff was engaged in feeding information into the database since the last month,” said Meenakshi Walke, principal, Indian Education Society (IES) Secondary School, Bhayandar. “We were unable to access the website only.”
However, associations of schools and junior colleges have demanded third party assistance in the task claiming that it has burdened them. “We have to fill the online application forms of over 14 lakh Class 12 candidates by August 31, apply for online staff approvals and now fill in information for the database,” said Anil Deshmukh, general secretary, Maharashtra State Federation of Junior College Teachers Organisation. “This is leaving us with no time to focus on teaching and other academic work.”
Shikshak Bharti, another teachers association has recently put forth the demand to chief minister, Devendra Fadnavis of outsourcing the work of entering information in the database.