The acute shortage of academic staff in the government educational institutes of district Ramban has led to the deterioration of quality of education affecting thousands of students.
The mountainous district has 21 higher secondary, 68 high schools and 872 other government schools in which more than 60,000 students are enrolled.
The staff scarcity situation can be gauged from the fact that 50 per cent of posts for lecturers and 70 per cent for masters are lying vacant in the district. In 21 Higher Secondary Schools of Ramban district, against 269 posts for lecturers only 133 have been filled, while 136 posts for lecturers are lying vacant since many years.
Out of total 667 posts of masters in the district, 473 are lying vacant. Moreover, 139 posts for general line teachers are lying vacant due to which most of the government schools in hilly and remote villages have been left at the mercy of Rehbar e Taleem teachers.
According to official statistics, 15 posts of principals are vacant in 21 higher secondary schools in the district while 32 out of 60 posts of headmasters are vacant. Two posts of Zonal Education Officers have been filled in the six education zones of Ramban District while four posts of ZEOs in Banihal, Khari, Ukhral and Batote zones have been lying vacant for one to two years and Principals of different Higher Secondaries have been given the relevant charges. In addition to their own duties, the Principals are not able to do justice to their additional charges, making it difficult for thousands of teachers to handle their day-to-day affairs.
The condition of newly established higher secondary schools in Ramban district is no better and educational activities are affected due to lack of lecturers and school buildings in newly established Higher Secondary Schools of Tethar, Chamlawas, Pogal, Maligam, Sanasar, Rajgarh, Dhandrath and Dalwah. While upgraded High Schools of Bangara, Kariya Peerah, Chakka, Haroog, Bahurdar Neel, Bankoot and Tungali Gool are also facing staff and building problems.
In addition, non-teaching staff in Education Department of district Ramban has only 6 posts of Senior Assistants filled out of 29, while 16 out of 18 posts of account assistants are vacant. Due to this, teachers of different schools have been attached to the ZEO offices and despite several orders from the higher ups of the Education Department, the practice of attachments in the department has not ended yet.
Chief Education Officer Ramban Vinod Koul while talking to Greater Kashmir said that the issue of shortage of teaching staff in government schools in Ramban district has been raised several times with the Director School Jammu and is hopeful that the promotion of teachers will help them overcome the shortage of teaching staff soon. He said that no steps have been taken so far for temporary educational arrangements to overcome the shortage of lecturers and hopefully necessary steps will be taken soon.