The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) administration has proposed to merge 17 Marathi-medium schools, which have only a few students, with an English-medium civic school in the same building or the nearest area.
In a proposal tabled in the PMC Standing Committee, Municipal Commissioner Kunal Kumar said that the civic body has been merging civic schools due to fewer students.
“Due to a drop in the number of students in certain schools, the services of teachers could not be fully used… on the other hand, certain civic schools have a shortage of teaching staff. The merger of civic schools with fewer students will help resolve the issue,” he said.
If the civic schools with lower number of students are merged with the nearest civic schools, then its teachers can be diverted to schools which have a staff shortage, Kumar said in the proposal.
Under government norms, there should be a minimum of 30 learning hours for school students, but in PMC-run schools it is only 26 hours due to staff shortage.
“The recent survey revealed that 17 Marathi-medium schools and one English-medium school have very few students. Thus, these schools, if merged in the nearest civic school, would free the excess staff and also the infrastructure,” the proposal stated.
The PMC commissioner said that the civic body could not even appoint a principal for some civic schools because these schools require a minimum student strength to qualify for the appointment of a principal.