A five-member committee, appointed by Gujarat Education Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama, has suggested a dress code for teachers, surveillance in classrooms, ban on mobile phones in school and ban on wearing T-shirts and jeans, as part of the reforms in primary school.
The recommendations came after deliberations on a blueprint after a meeting of the municipal school board chairman, zila panchayat presidents, district education officers (DEO) and district primary education officers (DPEO) at the Gujarat Council of Educational Research and Training (GCERT), presided by Chudasama, on June 6 (soon after the state board results were declared).
The report, a copy of which is with The Indian Express, lists the reforms under six heads. It recommends that male and female teachers should have a colour code in clothes, though women have been allowed to wear sarees or shalwar-kameez. Teachers caught with mobile phones in class for more than three times will have their salaries deducted, suggests the report.
For accountability, teachers will have to teach the same students from Class 1 to Class V and the classes will be watched under closed-circuit cameras to ensure discipline and punctuality. The report also lays out rules for transfer and appointment of primary teachers, recommendations for improvement in standards, suggestions to improve infrastructure and basic facilities in primary schools and rationalisation of schools.
“The recruitment of teachers should be done only during vacations.transfers only on the basis of their performance over three years,” says the report. Emphasis has been laid on teaching English and Hindi right from Class 1 and the annual evaluation exercise “gunotsav” to be made a monthly affair. On the basis of these results, teachers with poor results will be transferred and those doing well will be rewarded. The panel also mandates a half-monthly exam for the students of Class VIII.
Gunotsav, an evaluation of government primary schools introduced by the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi in 2009, was carried out in two phases – internally by the schools and externally by officials from across government departments and a comparative analysis was drawn out. However, this only ended up giving a performance rating.
The last gunotsav, however, even covered some grant-in-aid schools and the education department decided that schools would be graded on the basis of their gunotsav performance and their grants would be decided on its basis. In fact, this committee also suggests putting grant-in-aid schools under a severe scanner. “There should be a check on government-affiliated private schools.
Schools without infrastructure and inadequate faculty that affect quality of education should be checked and closed down,” the report suggests.
The panel is in favour of having the Vidyalakshmi bond of Rs 2,000 meant for girls in BPL families to cover all girl students. “The basic principle to be followed here is if quality is improved, the enrolment will automatically increase. The education department is focusing on primary education as it forms the foundation of education for a student which is later reflected in the secondary classes and board results,” said chairman of the five-member committee Jagdish Bhavsar, who is also the chairman of Ahmedabad Municipal School Board.