Gujarat govt cancels 8-hour shift for primary teachers

The Gujarat government on Wednesday reversed its earlier order mandating that government primary school teachers work for eight hours. The state government was adamant on making the teachers work for eight hours, through a notification against which a majority of the teachers and their federations had expressed anger.

Education Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama on Wednesday said, “We are cancelling the earlier notification mandating the primary teachers to work for eight hours.”

Protesting primary teachers from various parts of the state had met education department officials on Monday.

The teachers demanded that if the state government wanted the primary teachers to work for eight hours as per the provision in the RTE, they must also consider the provision under the RTE which states that teachers cannot be assigned other duties apart from teaching.

The teachers expressed that recess time was not counted in the work shift of 8 hours despite the fact that they have to take care of children. The teachers report an hour early as compared to students at the school and leave the school an hour later after students.

The Gujarat Teachers’ Federation said that if primary teachers were considered at par with other government employees, including college teachers, it must consider that all of them get compulsory holiday on Saturdays, which the primary teachers are not granted.