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Perform or perish, Himanta tells govt schools


GUWAHATI, July 10 - Taking a grim view of the poor performance of a number of government schools in the HSLC examination this year, State Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today warned them to perform or perish.

Reviewing the school-wise performance in the HSLC examination at the SEBA office here today in the presence of the principals of under-performing schools, the minister also directed some strict actions like giving voluntary retirement option and disciplinary action against the teachers of such schools.

The Education Minister further said that provincialized schools resorting to enrolment record manipulation would be de-provincialized, if proved so. On the other hand, incentives were announced for the schools having cent per cent result this time.

Principals of 31 schools with zero pass percentage were asked to explain the cause of their miserable performance in an open meeting. Incidentally, a large number of schools with a zero pass percentage were the schools that were provincialized in the year 2013.

As many as eight schools from Dima Hasao have zero pass percentage whereas not a single student of four schools in Kamrup district could clear the HSLC examination this year.

During the assessment, several disturbing facts about the educational scenario in the schools of Assam came to light, contrary to the general opinion about lack of teachers and poor infrastructure in government schools. Several of the under-performing schools have more teachers, compared to the number of students appearing for the HSLC examination. At many places, teachers draw their salaries without even going to schools. The Education Minister also quizzed the principals about the attendance and educational qualification of the teachers.

�During the review, we also noticed that several recently provincialized schools have single-digit number of students. As per rules, the schools should have at least 30 students for provincialization, but today we find several contradictions. Inquiry would be conducted by tallying the school records with the SEBA records. We will de-provincialize such schools giving false data of students,� said Sarma.

The principals of 93 schools having a pass percentage below 10 were also held accountable for their failure.

�We would send inspection teams to such schools to review the overall performance of the teachers. The team will also interact with the local people and further action would be taken up on the basis of reports produced by the team. If required, such schools would be merged with other schools and teachers would be transferred elsewhere,� he added.

On the contrary, principals of the schools having 100 per cent result were lauded for their success in the same meeting. Teachers of 19 schools with 100 per cent results would be feted during the Teachers Day with a certificate and cash incentive of Rs 10,000 for every teacher of such school.

A Whatsapp group of the poor performing schools would be formed where the principals have to give daily updates about the presence of teachers from the morning assembly session till the school gets over.

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