There are 39 students at Government Middle School (GMS), Turmari, and four teachers have been employed to teach them. At GMS, Kailpur Braich, six teachers teach as many as 66 students.
While you may think, there is a surplus of teachers in city government schools, wait till you see the other side of the story.
The situation is grim at many other nearby schools. GMS, Kutcha Number 16, has 90 students but only a single teacher to cater to them. At government primary school, Moti Nagar, there are two teachers and the strength of the school is 150.
The schools don't give two hoots about what the Right to Education Act says - the teacher to pupil ratio must be 1:3 for Classes 1-5 and 1:35 for Classes 6-8.
While there are schools with surplus staff, there are many other government primary and senior secondary schools in the district which are facing shortage of teachers and the posts are lying vacant.
A government school incharge on the condition of anonymity says, “The primary schools are running with one or two teachers and in senior secondary schools, posts are lying vacant, so one can understand the level of education in these schools. There is a need to shift the surplus staff in the schools where posts are lying vacant. Only then can we improve the schools' results.”
District education officer, secondary, Paramjit Kaur Chahal, says, “The rationalisation process done this year has not been implemented till now. However, I am aware that posts are lying vacant in government schools and we need to fill them to bring quality education in schools. But the higher authorities need to decide whether to implement rationalisation or not.”
Talking to HT, Lakhvir Singh, principal of Government Senior Secondary School, Giddervindi, says, “In our school, 15 posts are lying vacant from the last four years and there are 31 sanctioned posts. Good quality education can only be provided to students when we have a sufficient staff. The school has 467 students in the school.”
On this, Sikander Singh Maluka, Punjab education minister, says, “We are receiving a lot of complaints regarding several government middle schools which have surplus teachers. I will ask the DEOs to send me the detailed report about schools so that we can carry the rationalisation process and shift the surplus teachers in schools where their strength is less. Moreover, we are also working to fill the vacant posts in government senior secondary schools.”
Posts lying vacant
School Sanctioned seats Vacant
GSSS Hanbowal Bet 28 11
GSSS, Hathoor 36 21
GSSS, Noorpur Bet 28 13
GSSS, Giddervindi 31 15
School Strength Teachers
GMS, Jhande 43 6
GMS, Lalton Khurd 73 7
GMS, Ladian Khurd 46 5
GMS, Faijgarh 67 6
GMS, Morkrima 45 5
Schools Strength Teachers
GPS, Kutcha -16 90 1
GPS, Khud mohalla 150 2
GPS, Moti Nagar 150 2
What the RTE Act says
The RTE Act mandates a minimum teacher to pupil ratio of 1:35 to ensure that every child learns better in the classroom. For primary schools, (Classes 1 to 5), there must be at least two to five teachers and number of students per teacher must not exceed by 40, depending on the enrolment ranging between 60 and 200. In upper primary classes, (Classes 6 to 8), at least one teacher per class and one teacher each for science and maths, social studies, languages and for every 35 students is mandatory.