THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The cluster meeting for English teachers of the district that was to be held on Monday at Thycaud Model Higher Secondary School plunged into chaos owing to the absence of resource persons.
About 150 teachers, from various parts of the district, had arrived at Model School in the morning itself, while the resource persons failed to reach the school citing sickness. Three resource persons had to lead classes in the cluster meeting, which was the first one of this academic year.
Principal of the school, Mohanadasan Pillai, was informed that one resource person was hospitalised, while the others were sick. But it was only after the teachers had reached the school and waited for hours that the reason for the absence of those who had to lead the meeting came to ‘light.’ “This is an utterly irresponsible deed. We lost a whole day. That too at a time when we are struggling to finish portions of the syllabus. Students in our school also lost valuable classes,” one of the teachers told Express.
Cluster meetings were scheduled on three consecutive days. “We have no idea about what would happen to the meetings to be held in the coming days,’’ said one of the teachers.
However, the cluster meeting for English scheduled at SMV Higher Secondary School somehow took place with one resource person. It was at the SMV and Model Higher Secondary Schools that cluster meetings for English of the district were scheduled. The
Government spends around ` 60,000 for conducting cluster meetings of three days for one subject. Teachers are provided travel allowance, tea and snacks twice a day and writing materials.
Meanwhile, the Higher Secondary Directorate informed that it will take action against the resource persons who declined to attend the meetings and the meetings scheduled for Monday and Wednesday have been rescheduled to January 30 and 31, to which the teachers have also agreed to cooperate.
“We could make the teachers do exercise for preparing model question papers, which was scheduled for the third day,” said officials of the Directorate.
However, teachers say that cluster meetings, an exercise started by the former LDF government to give training to teachers and enable them to share experiences, have turned a mockery now.
The meetings, which used to be conducted once in a month in the starting phase, have gradually declined in number and now only one takes place in an academic year.
Trained higher secondary teachers are deployed as resource persons. An expert from the State Council Educational Research and Training (SCERT) also participates. But he was also absent at Monday’s meeting at the Model School.