Telangana: Govt Schools face severe teacher shortage as reopening approaches

In March 2022, the government had announced in the Assembly that 13,000 teachers would be appointed to address the vacancies.

Hyderabad: Government schools in the state are facing a critical shortage of teachers, with approximately 15,000 vacancies remaining unfilled. As schools are set to reopen on June 12, the state is also conducting a special campaign, the Badi Bata Program, to increase student enrollment. However, the lack of teachers poses a significant challenge to imparting quality education. With a total of 26,074 government schools across the state, the need for teacher appointments is urgent.

In March 2022, the government had announced in the Assembly that 13,000 teachers would be appointed to address the vacancies. A test for teacher appointments was conducted in June 2022. However, despite a year having passed since then, no notification has been issued for the appointments, and the finance department has not provided the necessary approvals. This delay in the appointment process has led to dissatisfaction among teachers’ organizations.

Previously, the services of 12,000 Vidya Volunteers were utilized in government schools until March 2020 to fill in the gaps in teacher vacancies. However, these services have not been availed for the past three years, exacerbating the teacher shortage issue. Teachers’ organizations have raised concerns about the lack of promotion for qualified teachers as School Assistants and questioned how the government plans to overcome the shortage of specialist subject teachers without the support of Vidya Volunteers.

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To cope with the shortage, teachers are being hired on a temporary basis through deputation. Approximately 6,392 primary schools in the state are managed by a single teacher, and when they go on leave, the schools face temporary closures. Teachers’ organizations have been demanding the provision of at least two teachers for each school, but no positive response has been received so far.

While the government has allocated Rs 3,500 crore in the first phase for improving basic facilities in schools, the lack of teachers remains a pressing issue. To maintain the educational standards, it is crucial to appoint at least 10,000 temporary volunteers, and an expenditure of Rs 150 crore would be sufficient for this purpose. The Education Department is urged to take immediate action and issue a notification to appoint new teachers to address the critical shortage and ensure quality education for students.

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