Bihar Education dept orders prefabricated classrooms, guest teachers to overcome shortage in govt schools

Patna: The Bihar Education Department has ordered government schools facing shortage of classrooms to construct prefabricated classrooms to accommodate students, an official said.

The Education Department has also directed schools facing shortage of teachers to hire ‘guest teachers’.

Many government schools in Bihar are facing shortage of classrooms and teachers as per inspection reports of District Magistrates, the official said.

“Due to regular inspection, schools are witnessing almost full attendance of teachers and students across the state. The exercise has revealed several deficiencies in school infrastructure, especially shortage of classrooms and teachers.

“Classes are being taken in verandah/open space because of the lack of space in the existing classrooms. Keeping the current situation in mind, officials concerned have been directed to get ‘prefabricated classrooms’ built on a war footing basis. The prefabricated classrooms should be built on a requirement basis”, said K K Pathak, Additional Chief Secretary (ACS), Education Department, in his letter (dated August 26, 2023) to DMs across the state ‘Guest teachers’ will also be appointed immediately to overcome the shortage, said the official.

The chronic deficiencies in school infrastructure, especially the shortage of classrooms and teachers—were noticed during regular inspections, started from July 1, 2023, of schools by the DMs in their respective districts.

The ACS has asked DMs to personally monitor the progress of the work. The prefabricated classrooms can be built swiftly and cost-effectively.

The ACS in his letter further said, “Increase in the attendance of pupils and teachers, has also revealed the shortage of teachers in schools. Although the Bihar Public Service Commission has started the recruitment process of teachers, completion of the process will take at least four to six months. Therefore, the department has directed officials concerned to appoint ‘guest teachers’ on priority to meet the demand. It must be done according to the set guidelines”.

Earlier, the regular inspection had revealed that the majority of the primary and middle schools in the state have discoloured chalkboards, running without proper boundary walls and are facing acute shortage of functional toilets.

On this, the ACS, in a missive, dated August 16, 2023, to DMs across the state, had asked the latter to ensure fresh quote of black paint on all discoloured chalkboards of schools at the earliest and also maintenance of non-functional toilets under the cleanliness head of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme.

The ACS also asked DMs to ensure the construction of boundary walls of schools (those who don’t have one) as early as possible.

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