J-K's Udhampur grapples with shortage of teachers

Government schools here are grappling with a severe problem of shortage of teachers, with schools in rural areas bearing the maximum brunt of the staff crunch. Official data showed that 543 out of 2,246 teaching posts including 274 posts of lecturers, 272 posts of masters, 543 posts of teachers are lying vacant in the district. There is more than 30 per cent shortage of staff in government schools in rural areas of the district, as per the data. Teachers and students accused the education department of the lackadaisical approach in filling the vacant posts. Students and teachers in Nallah Ghoran High School said that a lack of teaching staff hampers their study and students were leaving the school for private institutes. "Staff is very less in our school. We have only three to four teachers in the school but most of them are busy in office work. There are some subjects which we have not touched yet. How will we pass the examination?" Arun Kumar, a class nine student, told ANI. Speaking to ANI, Chief District Education Officer, Sardar Daljeet Singh, agreed that there is a shortage of teachers, especially in rural areas, and promised to take up the issue with higher authorities to resolve the problem."As far as the availability of teachers is concerned, there is a huge deficiency of teachers in government schools, especially in Kulwanda and Godi areas. There is a process of teacher recruitment through SSRB. As soon as the new teachers come in, we will fill those vacancies in these areas. We have nearly 56 teachers in the last days whom I have deployed in those areas," Singh said.