Angul: The Odisha government is taking a number of steps to bring state-run schools at par with private institutions. However, the shortage of teachers is affecting the plans to improve the standards. The mineral rich Angul district is a case in point.
According to information available, the total number of teachers’ posts sanctioned in the district stands at 1,065. However, only 600 teachers have been employed with the remaining posts lying vacant. There are 110 posts for headmasters of which, 91 have been filled up. The remaining 19 schools are functioning without headmasters.
Many schools in Angul district are operating without teachers in vital subjects. A total of 141 posts in state-run schools are for mathematics teachers. However, 68 of these posts are lying vacant. Similarly, out of a total of 131 posts for teachers, only 69 have been filled up. Sources informed that there are 279 posts for English, History and Geography in the district. However, a total of 128 positions are lying vacant. Out of 108 posts for Hindi teachers, 46 are lying vacant.
What is surprising to note that in some schools where positions of Science and Maths teachers are lying vacant, the classes are being conducted by Arts stream tutors. As per information shared by the District Education Office, there are 60 such schools where Arts teachers are taking science and mathematics classes.
“Schools are getting smart class rooms, modern libraries and laboratories. But if a school doesn’t have the required number of teachers, what is the use of this infrastructure development,” observed some locals.
In this regard, vice-president of the Odisha Secondary School Teachers’ Association (OSSTA), Saroj Kumar Panigrahi said most schools are struggling with teaching staff shortage. He informed that from October 25, full-fledged classes will resume in schools in Angul district. However, shortage of teaching staff would certainly create problems for the students, he added.
When contacted, district education officer Niranjan Sahu said that the government is taking steps to fill up vacant posts. In this regard, advertisements have also been published. Soon the problem will be solved, asserted Sahu.