DCs for banning teachers’ politics

In a bid to improving quality of education at all private educational institutions across the country, Deputy Commissioners (DC) of different districts are seeking a ban on teachers’ politics. In a set of 50 recommendations to the government for improving quality of education in the non-government educational institutions, the proposal was submitted ahead of the DC Conference scheduled to begin on July 15 in the capital.

In their recommendations the DCs proposed for arranging regular visits of experienced teachers to rural and remote schools as guest teachers, introduce policies on tuition fees, open a TV channel exclusively dedicated for education and appoint contractual teachers locally to improve education at the schools located in inaccessible regions.

The proposals also recommended how to develop quality education at field level, set up teacher training centres in every district, provide vehicle for each DC office to carry question papers of public exams, make flexible registration process of kindergarten and non-government educational institutions and form district education committee to evaluate quality of education in upazila level.

The ministry of education officials said DCs will present the proposals at the DC conference during their view-exchange meetings with Education Minister Dr Dipu Moni. The demand for banning involvement of teachers in politics is one of the proposals of the DCs. Kurigram DC Sultana Parvin made the proposal to the government.

Involvement of the teacher in politics is seen as a barrier to making an educated nation and building a digital Bangladesh, which are top pledges of the prime minister. In support of the recommendation, Ministry of Education officials suggested banning politics for teachers in private institutions through formation of a specific policy.

The government also took an initiative last year to keep the teachers of the private academic institutions away from political activities so they could concentrate on teaching. In March last year, on the basis of an intelligence agency report, Prime Minister Office (PMO) had directed the Education Ministry to take measures to slap a ban on political activities of teachers.

A letter was sent from the Cabinet Division to the Education Ministry on March 29 last year mentioning that there are no specific rules for control of the jobs of teachers of private educational institutions. Though the activities of the public servants are regulated by specific rules, there are no such rules for teachers of such private institutions.

Taking the opportunity, teachers of many private educational institutions in the districts are running full-time political activities, holding posts of different political parties, the cabinet division letter mentioned. Due to their engagement in political activities, many teachers remain absent from classrooms, seriously affecting education of their students, the letter added.

Later, the Education Ministry on April 30 directed the Directorate of Secondary and Higher Education (DSHE), regulatory body of private teachers to take necessary measures to implement instruction of the premier. The DSHE started a process to stop teachers’ politics but there is no visible progress till now.