The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Code whip on truant teachers
- Survey of part-time lecturers sets off service rule revamp

After schoolteachers, the state government is poised to crack the whip on truant college and university teachers.

Following the preliminary findings of an ongoing survey on part-time teachers in undergraduate colleges, a new code of conduct with a list of dos and don'ts is being formulated to teach the teachers a lesson in discipline.

The government has recently implemented a code of conduct for schoolteachers, banning private tuition.

'That full-time teachers in many colleges are not doing their job properly is clear from the preliminary reports of the study,' said Biman Bose, Left Front chairman and convener of the Front's education committee.

The survey was initiated by the government to find out the exact number of teachers working in the undergraduate colleges, as well as in various departments of the universities, on a part-time basis.

'Several colleges were found to have a few dozen part-time lecturers though they don't require more than two. The colleges had to appoint so many part-time teachers simply because most of their full-time teachers did not attend classes regularly,' said an official of the state education department. 'We are determined to stop this practice.'

To ensure that the proposed code ' set to be applicable for all colleges and universities in the state ' gets drafted as early as possible, the government is interacting with the authorities of the universities, including Calcutta University, to which nearly 200 colleges are affiliated.

'Different universities have different sets of service rules for their teachers. We are examining their rules and regulations so that a uniform code can be put in place, which will also be easier for the government to implement,' said Shyamapada Pal, member of the West Bengal Higher Education Council.

Existing university service rules have provisions of performance-based promotion. They also make it mandatory for teachers to regularly attend classes.

'But these rules are not implemented properly by the respective universities, as they do not follow a uniform pattern,' Pal said.

The new guidelines ' among other things ' are also likely to make the teachers submit annual performance appraisal reports and suggest only performance-based annual increments and promotions.

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