MALKANGIRI: With schools remaining closed following the COVID-19 lockdown, a large number of school teachers in Malkangiri have violated Government order and remained absent from their headquarters in the district.
As per reports, at least 30 to 40 per cent of teachers from primary and high schools run by the SC & ST department and School and Mass Education department have left for their home towns without intimating the administration.
As per the State Government’s guidelines, teachers of Government schools were instructed to remain in respective headquarters after schools closed. The district Collector has also directed all government employees not to leave headquarters without prior permission.
But only 50 to 60 per cent of teachers have complied and are taking online classes apart from Covid duties. The remaining have violated the order and have left for their native places. Sources said, these absentee teachers visit their schools once a month, put their signatures for the entire month and get full salaries. But none of them have been identified by the district administration so far.
District education officer Ramesh Chandra Sethy said that in March-April this year, salaries of 455 primary and high school teachers were held up for violating the Government order. "The onus is on block education officers to identify absent teachers and withhold their salaries while sharing the information with me. I have received no such feedback from authorities concerned," he said, adding that an enquiry will be initiated at the earliest.
Meanwhile, district welfare officer Pradeep Kumar Panda said instructions have been given to school authorities not to allow any teacher to leave their headquarters. Absentee statements of Ashram school teachers are being inspected before crediting their salaries. Regarding high school teachers under his department, Panda said he will conduct an enquiry soon.