The administrative overhaul of the National Education Society for Tribal Students (NESTS), which is expected to solve the massive teacher shortage faced by Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) for tribal students, will be approved “very soon” , Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda said on Saturday.
The Hindu had reported in September that in the 378 EMRSs functioning at the time, only about 4,000 teachers were employed (contractual, temporary and permanent) as against the 11,340 teachers recommended by the NESTS.
Responding to questions on the delay in recruitment of teachers, Mr. Munda said that the administrative change to completely move teacher recruitment of EMRSs to the Union government’s control will be completed soon.
Joint Secretary Naval Jit Kapoor told The Hindu, “The process is at the most advanced stage with the expenditure department and once completed, the teacher recruitment process will become smooth without any problems.” He added that once completed, they will be able to recruit 36,000 teachers as per the recommended figures for all 740 schools that are proposed to be sanctioned.
As of November, a total of 688 EMRSs have been sanctioned, of which 392 are functional.
However, officials at NESTS, the body that manages EMRSs, have said that even after the Expenditure Department approves the process to overhaul the procedure to recruit teachers, it will take at least a couple of years for the effects to show.
Currently, NESTS oversees management of the schools in different states, where separate State Education Societies for Tribal Students (SESTS) have been set up. While NESTS issues guidelines on syllabus, school criteria, etc., on-ground management was under the SESTS’.
After the overhaul, the ministry would have to scrap all SESTSs, and set up Regional Offices (RO) under direct control of NESTS. Following this, once the staffers were sanctioned at the ROs, the NESTS would be able to directly sanction the number of teaching positions and recruit as per the Central reservation policies, by which the schools would be bound.