Teachers aghast as LMS beset with 'technical snags, difficult interface'

‘Normal schedule of online classes gets distracted; allow usage of all feasible digital platforms’
Teachers aghast as LMS beset with 'technical snags, difficult interface'
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Srinagar, May 31: The initiative of Learning Management System (LMS) introduced by the Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) has evoked strong criticism from the teaching community as the initiative as per the teachers has turned topsy-turvy.

The DSEK recently issued an order for introducing LMS in addition to routine online mode of education to monitor the online classes besides keeping track of the attendance of the teachers and students. The new initiative was launched to monitor the attendance of teachers as well as the students during the online classes.

However the initiative has turned topsy-turvy as the teachers are unable to use the new online application for holding online classes.

“No doubt LMS is a good initiative but at present when there is no physical contact with students it is impossible for it to yield results. Majority of students don't have smartphones even teachers are not able to use LMS properly,” a teacher said.

The teachers said the department should not focus on LMS but on online classes while using any form of digital platforms.

“Focus should be on reaching out to students by all feasible means so that their academics do not suffer,” the teacher said.

The teachers by and large complained that they are not able to use the LMS system as it faces several technical snags while uploading links of any online classes or sharing the video lecture or assignment on the portal.

Notably the administrative department earlier stressed that teachers should reach out to the students by different ways and means as feasible for them amid the ongoing pandemic situation.

However, the DSEK has sought compliance to the LMS by the teachers for holding online classes which has agitated the teaching community.

“The teachers should be allowed to use various feasible means to reach out to students instead of using a single platform so that instead of any limitations, we are able to deliver properly,” the teacher said.

Notably, the teachers besides holding online classes are also rendering their services at other fronts as well. The teachers are acting as in-charge of containment zones and also manage delivering on line classes besides distributing study materials among students.

Notably, only DSEK has ordered for using LMS for holding online classes while no such order has been issued in Jammu division.

While the teachers are yet to get acquainted with the LMS, the Chief Education Officers in various districts have started issuing circulars to the drawing and disbursing officers with instructions to withhold salary of teachers on the basis of their attendance in online classes.

“Before releasing the salary budget to schools and zones, consolidate the performance of online classes, school wise and furnish reports. The salary of poorly performing schools and teachers will in no case be released,” reads the verbal instructions issued by one of the CEOs Kashmir.

The CEOs have asked the heads of the schools that the data pertaining to LMS should be kept updated like staff wise e-content uploaded, assignments uploaded, videos uploaded and subject wise number of students who responded on LMS.

The teachers have taken an exception from such circulars saying that the students are yet to be tracked on LMS as they do not have access to the smart phone or internet.

“The LMS is not going well with the teachers as well as the students. The teachers should not be forced to use LMS which is not working properly,” a teacher said.

Interestingly, last year the government school teachers across J&K conducted online classes throughout the academic session by using different student and teacher friendly digital platforms. Besides holding online classes, the teachers also uploaded study material up to class 12th on website of the directorate as well.

However, this year, the introduction of LMS has left the teachers confused.

Director School Education Kashmir (DSEK), Tasaduq Hussain Mir said they have planned to organize training session for teachers to streamline the conduct of online classes through LMS.

“We will engage Resource Persons to hold training of teachers and gradually the teachers will get acquainted with LMS and classes will be conducted properly,” he said.

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