The government college teachers’ associations are urging the Higher Education Department to act on their long-pending representations.
On Thursday, the Government College Teachers’ Manram wrote to Chief Minister, Higher Education Minister and department officials listing their grievances. Several of their demands, including their pending career advancement scheme benefits, incentive pay hike for faculty who wish to pursue M.Phil and Ph.D, transfer counseling for faculty and filling of vacancies were not acted upon, it said.
“There are over 7,000 faculty vacancies, including in teacher education institutes. The government had issued notification to fill 2,340 vacancies and though aspirants have applied nothing has come of it,” said the Manram general secretary R. Kumar. “In 27 of the 41 constituent colleges there is no effort to fill faculty and non-teaching staff vacancies,” he added.
The principal of a college in a western district said: “Daily we get complaints from students about dirty toilets but we are helpless as we don’t have non-teaching staff,” he said.
A 46-year-old Ph. D degree holder, who had cleared with high scores in the Teacher Recruitment Board test and SET, is awaiting recruitment. He blames it on redeployment of excess faculty from Annamalai University. “I could not get a job in an aided college despite scoring well in the interview,” he said.
Tamil Nadu Government College Teachers’ Association president T. Veeramani said currently 31 colleges did not have principals while in constituent colleges around 1,000 faculty vacancies existed. The government was still employing over 4,000 guest lecturers, he said. “We do not know what decision the department will take. They have started new courses and new colleges. How can we run institutions without faculty to teach students?” I have asked.
Though Minister K. Ponmudy had been periodically interacting with the associations, he had not given any concrete answers, they said. The situation was pathetic in rural colleges as there were no teachers, the associations point out.
“We even agreed to six-month deputation of teachers. We said each of us would be willing to go for six months. But nothing has come of it either,” Mr. Veeramani said, pointing out that the department had not conducted transfer counseling for three years. “If that is done then people would opt for colleges closest to their home town,” he said.