Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir government has once again woken up to the functioning of biometric attendance of teachers in all government schools.
The issue came to the fore during a meeting convened by the Chief Secretary (CS) to review the functioning of the School Education Department in J&K.
Apart from other issues, the meetings also discussed the operationalisation of biometric attendance in schools.
In this regard, directions were issued to the department to install biometric attendance devices and make them operational in all the government schools across J&K by March 2022.
This is not the first time that the government has decided to switch to biometric attendance in schools. The initiative was taken in 2016 to ensure transparency in the attendance of teachers in schools.
However, the decision took a back seat owing to the non-electrification of government schools across J&K.
This year again, the department has decided to make biometric attendance of teachers mandatory in schools.
As per the minutes of the meeting, the government has also asked the school heads to utilise local school funds for maintenance of school buildings, carrying out minor repairs, and keeping the drinking water points and toilets functional.
The meeting also stressed for implementation of the New Education Policy (NEP)-2020 and operationalisation of the kindergarten section in all the government schools.
“NEP-2020 will be implemented by operationalising 8000 kindergartens in Government Primary Schools. Possibility of convergence with MGNREGA and Panchayat will be explored for setting up the kindergartens,” the meeting was informed.
The department has informed the Chief Secretary that measures would be taken for improving learning outcomes through competency-based training.
“At least three training sessions in each DIET will be held for content enrichment every month,” read the minutes of the meeting.
The department has decided to fix the responsibility on the teaching staff for not improving the learning outcomes after training.
“Stringent action under rules will be undertaken,” the document reads.
The School Education Department is also planning to rope in local artisans and craftsmen to teach the students local skills.
“Vocational education is to be introduced from middle school onwards and the institutions can utilise vocational laboratories for the purpose,” it reads.
The department said that mentoring of 10 students by one teacher at the school level would be started by the end of December this year.
The Out of School Children (OoSC) identified in the Talash Survey and also through the PRIs would be mainstreamed in schools or through NIOS or SoS to reduce the dropout rate.
“Use of NIOS or SoS for imparting education at middle schools should be taken in a big way to decrease dropouts,” the CS directed the department.