Mismanagement in education Sector


While education sector in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir should have been taking a lead in its better management and planning, it is found in utter disarray and in a confused state in managing its basic infrastructure. We already know and have highlighted some peculiar characteristics in managing Government schools especially Higher Secondary Schools where in many cases, total faculty staff exceeded in number the actual roll of students. There were cases where the best qualified teachers were not contributing as expected from them simply by faulty planning in postings, transfers and allocation of teaching duties. It is difficult to understand as to why 52 education zones out of 97 in the UT should present a dismal picture primarily concerning human resources in manning this important department. Why should, for instance, 121 Government Higher Secondary Schools be allowed to be run without a permanent Principal or the Headmaster as the case be ? The Education Department, otherwise, is known to be over staffed, then how come as many Higher Secondary Schools be there without the top teacher ? There are several issues related to administration in High Schools and particularly in Higher Secondary Schools requiring full time devotion to such work by its head, in the absence of which the officiating or the ad-hoc arrangement cannot take usual decisions as wielding no powers for which the matters are kept either pending or sent to the concerned Chief Education Officers meaning delays and wastage of time as also virtually no development of the school concerned. Obviously, a permanent head can do much more and in time than one just officiating or attending to the skeleton administrative work. Not only that, 348 High Schools too are “Headless” in Jammu region alone and for years together. Just delving further deep into the mess, some districts in the region have no Chief Education Officers (CEOs). Agreed, now for more than a year, schools are more or less totally closed and on-line coaching is provided to students which we can call just skeleton services and could never be a substitute for normal coaching in schools but it is learnt that such a miserable condition in running these institutions is there in the education sector for the last many years. Perhaps, Education Department appears to have been ”delisted” from the schedule of administrative priorities of UT administration that staff strength is so unprofessionally managed. Retirements are not replenished with replacements and mostly, senior teachers and aspirants for heading Higher Secondary and High Schools who otherwise would fall in eligibility groups, suffer on account of administrative lethargy. Corona – virus, it appears, has led those in charge of running the affairs of these Education Department especially in Jammu region, to virtually write off the basic requirement of schools. When there is a head in an institution, small or big, there is a semblance of the system running smoothly and its absence means no one’s baby. We have seen the type of how decisions pertaining to this department are taken in matters of not ”regularising ” even duly promoted senior grade teachers and promoted to Principals cadre etc, kept lingering on for years during which time, most of the aspirants attained superannuation. It was only last year due to pragmatic initiative taken by a bureaucrat, that the case was settled which should ordinarily have been settled in full, years before. We trust, sheer professionalism and an approach on pragmatism should get cultivated in the top administrative set up of the Education Department especially in Jammu region, although that of Kashmir too is not that satisfactory, so that the morass and the mire which are apparent in the area of human resources deployment in this vital sector are set right for achieving better results.