Students Brace for Board Exams Amidst Lecturer Shortages in Rajasthan's Upgraded Schools

In 2021, 240 schools were upgraded to higher secondary, with only one lecturer post approved per school. Students in these institutions faced the challenge of appearing for their 12th board exams without adequate teaching support.
Students Brace for Board Exams Amidst Lecturer Shortages in Rajasthan's Upgraded Schools

Jaipur- In a crucial development for the education sector in Rajasthan, the newly formed BJP government has issued a directive for all departments to formulate a 100-day action plan to address pressing challenges. At the forefront of this initiative is the State Education Department, which has unveiled an ambitious plan to fill nearly one lakh vacancies within its ranks. This comprehensive strategy, outlined with distinct tasks and completion targets set at 30, 60, and 90 days, seeks to urgently tackle the acute shortage of teachers in the state.

This timely move gains added significance against the backdrop of concerns over the lack of lecturers in the upgraded higher secondary schools. Despite the upgrade of around 6,000 schools in the past two years, a critical shortage of lecturers persists, affecting the quality of education provided to students.

As per media reports, despite the upgrade of around 4,000 secondary schools to higher secondary schools in March 2022, and subsequent direct upgrades of approximately 2,000 upper primary schools, a staggering 6,000 schools in the state are facing a critical shortage of lecturers. The dearth of teaching staff is poised to adversely impact the upcoming board examinations for students in these institutions.

The situation is further exacerbated by the fact that, despite the upgrade, only one lecturer post per school has been sanctioned while the actual need is for three lecturers in each school. This has left a significant void in the teaching faculty, jeopardizing the education of students who are set to appear for their board exams in March.

Counselling for the recruitment of lecturers commenced on January 2. However, reports suggest that upgraded schools may not receive the much-needed lecturers. While counselling for many subjects has concluded, the looming concern is that candidates will be placed in schools with long-standing vacant positions rather than in the upgraded institutions where their expertise is urgently required.

This is not the first time such a situation has arisen. In 2021, 240 schools were upgraded to higher secondary, with only one lecturer post approved per school. Students in these institutions faced the challenge of appearing for their 12th board exams without adequate teaching support.

An anonymous government school teacher, specializing in social science, revealed the challenging situation where she is tasked with teaching Mathematics and Science at the secondary level due to an acute shortage of subject-specific educators. This unconventional adjustment, prompted by the scarcity of teachers, is affecting students' performance in these crucial subjects and potentially impacting overall academic results in government schools."

Basant Kumar Jyani, the State Spokesperson for the Rajasthan Senior Teachers Association, expressed his concerns over the matter. He emphasized that despite the upgrades, the 6,000 higher secondary schools have not been approved for additional lecturer posts in two consecutive sessions. Jani proposes a solution, urging authorities to involve these schools in the ongoing counseling for newly selected lecturers.

Additionally, he highlights a broader issue within the education department, where 50 percent of vacant posts are typically filled through departmental promotions every year. However, promotions for the Senior Teacher and Lecturer categories have been pending for the last three sessions, further exacerbating the staffing crisis.

In light of these challenges, stakeholders and educators are appealing to the new government for urgent intervention. They are calling for the immediate sanctioning of lecturer posts for the upgraded schools and expediting departmental promotions to address the critical shortage of teaching staff in the state's education sector. The fate of thousands of students preparing for their board exams hangs in the balance, emphasizing the pressing need for prompt action to ensure a conducive learning environment for all.

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