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Sort out issues before implementing Khader panel report recommendations: Kerala teachers’ unions

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Though the government is moving ahead with its plan to bring school education under a single directorate as recommended by the Khader committee, many key issues raised by the stakeholders are yet to be sorted out, Opposition-affiliated teachers’ unions have said.

As part of the merger of the high school and higher secondary sections,  the post of headmaster in schools with classes I to XII has been re-designated as vice-principal. While the principal (from the higher secondary section) will be the head of the institution, there is no clarity yet on the administrative powers of vice-principals (headmasters).  

Higher secondary teachers have come out strongly against any arrangement in which they will be supervised by vice-principals from the high school section. They are also apprehensive that implementation of pay parity among high school and higher secondary teachers would eventually prove disadvantageous to them. 

“We have learnt that the government is planning to frame special rules on the delegation of powers of principal and vice-principal. We will take legal recourse against the government’s unilateral moves that are carried out without taking the higher secondary teachers into confidence,” said S Manoj of Aided Higher Secondary Teachers’ Association.  

General Education Minister V Sivankutty had recently convened meetings to iron out issues ahead of the framing of special rules but opposition-affiliated teachers unions boycotted it. They also rued the General Education Department’s practice of using the Quality Improvement Programme (QIP) meeting, dominated by ruling party-affiliated teachers’ unions, to discuss an important matter like Khader committee report implementation. 

RECOMMENDATIONS 

  • A 3-member committee headed by M A Khader submitted a report to the govt in 2019 for improving the quality of school education
  • It mooted the constitution of a Directorate of School Education by merging the Directorate of Public Instructions and HSE, VHSE Directorates.
  • As per the panel’s recommendation, the headmaster will be re-designated as ‘vice principal’ but administrative powers not clearly laid down
  • Higher secondary teachers are apprehensive that implementation of the recommendations will affect them adversely.

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