Teachers flay move to check misuse of medical leave

Avneet Kaur
Jalandhar, January 11

The recent move of the School Education Department to check the misuse of medical leave has caused anger among teachers.

The teachers alleged that the department was deliberately issuing such notices to stop them from coming on roads to hold protest against its anti-teacher policies.

In the notice released by the Director, Education Department, to all District Education Officers (DEOs), school heads have been asked to grant only three days of medical leave to a sick teacher.

“In case a teacher wants medical leave of over three days, the teacher concerned has to get permission from the Director and that too with a medical certificate from the competent authority,” the notice reads.

Moreover, till March 31, a school head cannot grant half-pay leave to any teacher. Under special circumstances, only the Director can grant these leave, as per the guidelines of the notice.

Ravi Wahi, a government schoolteacher from Kapurthala, said: “The department is trying to threaten the teachers through such moves.

“Whether it is public or private sector, medical leave is employees’ right and they were free to take sick leave when there is requirement without seeking any permission,” he said.

He said its strange how a sick teacher from a faraway village or city of the state would rush to the Director’s office in Chandigarh for the approval of leave when he/she was probably not well.

Rashpal Warraich, district president, Elementary Teacher Union, said: “No teacher takes unnecessarily leaves citing medical issues. Being a teacher, we realise our responsibility towards students and never compromise with their studies but there is no one to question the Director, Education Secretary and Education Minister, who are misusing their powers to malign the image of teachers.”

DEO (Primary) Rampal said many teachers whose retirement was close or have any personal work on the name of medical leaves want to avail of their remaining leaves. We want better results this year, and the move was for the betterment of the students and teachers have to abide by it.

Dept wants teachers to be more responsible: DEO

DEO (Primary) Rampal said: “The notice issued by the Director, Education Department, is for the welfare of students and their good results. The department wants teachers to be more responsible and they should not misuse their sick leave, especially at those times when it’s difficult to find substitute teachers.”

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