`Non-teaching staff pattern not workable'

Special Correspondent

KOCHI: The Kerala Private College Managements' Association said the non-teaching staff pattern formulated by the Government for aided colleges was unworkable and would hit the quality of science education.

The new pattern, introduced last September and put to effect from last month, would adversely affect science education in colleges, according to Mathew Maleparambil, secretary of the association. He noted that the new pattern, formulated following the shifting of the pre-degree course to schools, would more than halve the number of non-teaching staff in aided colleges. This was at a time when the administrative and maintenance responsibilities of the colleges had doubled following the changeover from the annual exams to the semester system, he said. Colleges that used to have 20 staffers could now have only seven.

Fr. Maleparambil, who is also Principal of St. Thomas College, Pala, said the new staff norms would result in total abolition of the posts of sweepers, watchers and scavengers, and thus affect regular maintenance of colleges. Moreover, there would be no attendants in the labs of `E' grade colleges (where student strength is under 500).

Even in higher-grade colleges, the number of lab attendants had been limited to one. "If the lab attendant goes on leave for a day, there would be no lab practical for the science course concerned," he said.

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