Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma

SHILLONG:

The state government is mulling an education commission to set right functioning of private schools.

Briefing the media after a meeting of the cabinet on Monday, which approved enhancing the grant-in-aid for such institutes in the midst of an ongoing agitation by teachers, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma said such a commission was required for the overall improvement of functioning of ad hoc schools.

 “As we move along we will come up with some kind of a mechanism in that line. I am giving you a hint by telling you that we are coming up with some kind of an education commission that will look into these concerns,” Sangma said . He was responding to a query on the failure of school managing committees (SMCs) to contribute to the welfare of their teachers.

The ad hoc teachers have been demanding a raise of Rs 18,000 per month besides a five per cent annual increment.

 “The mechanism to improve the overall functioning of ad hoc schools has to be looked into but it will be done at an appropriate time,” he said.

Sangma pointed out that the SMCs run the schools that are privately-owned and the government only aids them.

“It is not fully government’s responsibility to look into those aspects, but yes we are concerned about education and we feel that the teachers and the different SMCs are doing their part and they are adding to the education sector and hence the government is supporting. How the SMCs run the schools is their look out and I don’t have any comments on that,” he added.

Asked what action the government will take against SMCs for having no control over their teachers since the grant-in-aid is being given to them, the chief minister said, “Yes, the funds are given to the SMCs. These institutes are privately-run. Now the appointment is made by the SMCs and they are responsible to run it.”

“Therefore, we are considering to have some kind of a body, some kind of a commission that would look into these concerns and issues in the education sector. The government is doing its part to fund, to support these private teachers. However, they are not appointed by the government but by the SMCs and hence it is their responsibility,” he maintained.

Stating that there are lots of room for improvement, the chief minister said, “We hope we will be able to see that while we enhance the grant-in-aid to these schools, we will also see the improvement in the overall management of these schools.”