University graduates to be deployed as school teachers

By Manjima Dhakal

tu stuKathmandu, June 25: Volunteer teachers will be deployed to teach at all community schools across the country from coming fiscal year. 

The government has planned to send university students having Bachelor’s and Master’s degree to public schools as volunteer teachers from the beginning of the next fiscal year.
The government will mobilise the students before granting them the certificates of their concerned degrees to teach the school students based on their expertise. However, this year only Master’s level students of technical subjects from Tribhuvan University will be deployed as mathematics and science teachers, said Baikuntha Aryal, spokesperson at the Ministry of Education Science and Technology (MOEST).
The two-year long exercise will be realised after the government launched a campaign named ‘Chinau Afnai Mato, Banau Aafnai Desh’ (Know your land by yourself, build your country yourself) from this year’s budget.
The government has introduced the programme with an aim to fulfilling the dearth of teachers of mathematics and science subjects at community schools.
A similar system was in place till the referendum of 1980, which was later scrapped for a political reason.
“The system of the National Development Service, which used to be popularly called Rabise in Nepali, was very effective, but it was scrapped by the establishment fearing that the TU students who were teaching at schools during the time of national referendum would work in favour of the multiparty system,” said Jaya Ram Sharma, a college teacher.
Likewise, the government has introduced the campaign to instil among the youth love and affection towards the nation, familiarise them with the country’s geography and create a working culture for them.
“The ministry is now in consultation with the concerned stakeholders whether to make the deployment mandatory or optional. But the Ministry aims to give a credit of teaching in their transcript. If that happens, all students will be mobilised as teachers,” Aryal added.
According to Aryal, the ministry is also discussing the teaching duration of such students.
“The university students will be mobilised for six months to a year as per the on-going discussions with the stakeholders,” he added.
Likewise, the stakeholders have been discussing the way to mobilise the students of all universities in teaching for a certain period, Aryal said.
According to him, the ministry has drafted a working procedure and a debate on it is going on.
The draft will be finalised soon and the campaign will be implemented from coming fiscal year, he added.
According to the ministry, it will provide subsistence allowance to all volunteers. But, the amount will be nominal. The government has allocated Rs. 1.5 billion for the purpose.
Bidhya Nath Koirala, an educationist, said although the slogan of the campaign looked attractive, there was doubt about its effective implementation as many a campaign of the government had failed in the past.
If the programme is implemented effectively, it will contribute to upgrading the quality of education, he added. 

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