Only 5 teachers for 170 students at Kulgam school

Suhail Bhat
SRINAGAR, July 15: The Government Middle School Pachkhull in the Damhal Hajipora area of South Kashmir’s Kulgam district has only five teachers for over 170 students, which is against the “teacher-pupil” ratio policy.
The school was upgraded from primary to middle in November 2009, but no new teachers were deputed at the school. The lack of teachers has significantly affected how the school is administered and has exposed the department’s widely publicized rationalization program.
The teachers and locals expressed their disappointment at their institution’s apparent omission from the Government’s plan to rationalize the teaching staff at schools in Jammu and Kashmir. “The department sought the school’s data in 2021 to finish the process, but nothing has happened since then,” a teacher said.
An official of the education department said that the school is a shining illustration of how the rationalization policy, which was put in place to enhance learning, was poorly applied. “To enhance the results, the Government intends to cut the teacher-student ratio to 10:1, and this is already being discussed,” he said.
He said that the school has just five teachers for its more than 170 pupils, which implies that each of the 34 children will have a teacher. “This negatively affects students’ ability to learn and undermines the rationalization’s fundamental goal,” he said, adding that it is a serious issue that needs to be resolved.
Locals and teachers said that they had been pleading with the administration to send extra teachers to the school but that their requests had been ignored. “It is unfortunate that this school, which has such great potential, has been treated in such a way,” a local said.
The people complained that nobody cared about what happened at distant schools while maintaining that the school needs at least 30 more instructors to achieve teacher-to-pupil parity. “Government initiatives to improve the educational system are only implemented in Government headquarters that receive a lot of media attention,” another local said.
Chief Education Officer Kulgam, Mohammad Ashraf Rather, told EXCELSIOR that the issue has already been taken into consideration, and two more teachers have been authorized for the school. “The teacher will join soon,” he said.