With yet another academic session beginning amidst large scale vacancies of teacher posts, the Department of Higher Education (DHE) has asked colleges to engage required number of guest faculties.
As the staff crisis is yet to be solved, the department has allowed the colleges to appoint guest faculties keeping in mind the sanctioned strength and work load. Besides, State Government this year has made a separate budgetary provision for guest faculties.
Odisha has over 2000 colleges including government, self-financing, departmental and unaided. As per official records, of 1,818 sanctioned posts in 557 government degree colleges, over 600 are lying vacant.
Similarly, over 200 teacher posts are lying vacant in 1,334 junior government
colleges which have 1,023 sanctioned posts. Recently, to take care of vacancies in degree colleges to a certain extent, around 460 teachers were promoted from junior colleges to degree level on the basis of their eligibility and experience. The remaining vacancies are being taken care of by guest faculties mostly comprising retired teachers.
Last year, the State Government had increased the honorarium of guest faculties in government colleges by ` 50 per class. Accordingly, visiting teachers in degree colleges are paid ` 400 per class which works out to a monthly remuneration of ` 15,600.
In junior colleges, their pay per class was increased from ` 250 to ` 300 and the maximum remuneration limit went up to ` 9,300 per month.
Teachers in both categories cannot take more than 40 classes per month.
Meanwhile, officials in the DHE are hopeful of recruitment of regular teachers against the vacancies this year. Mihir Das, in-charge of the e-admissions, said the State Government has already initiated measures to fill up vacant teaching posts in junior and degree colleges by recruiting teachers through the Public Service Commission (PSC).
“The PSC had already conducted written tests and viva of the selected candidates would be held in August. We are hopeful that the appointment of regular teachers will be completed by September this year,” he said.
With the last major recruitment drive being done in 1998, number of vacancies in colleges across the State has been continuously rising.