The Voice of the People Party (VPP) today asked the State government to intervene and put an end to the current stalemate between the Meghalaya College Teachers’ Association (MCTA) and the Vice Chancellor of North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) over the implementation of the National Education Policy 2020 in Meghalaya.
Expressing concern over the present impasse between MCTA and the NEHU over implementation of the policy, VPP president Ardent M. Basaiawmoit said that the intervention of the State government is required in the interest of the students and the education in the State.
“The party is also concerned about the plight of the students and the effectiveness of teaching, if certain issues are not addressed, e.g. infrastructure, increase in the number of teachers, etc, before the new policy is put in place. The party also cautions the people and especially the students not to be influenced by those who wish to implement this policy within this academic year without taking into consideration the above mentioned problems,” Basaiawmoit said.
Categorically maintaining that the VPP is not against the National Education Policy, Basaiawmoit said that rather the party is only questioning the preparedness of various institutions and colleges to implement the policy within this academic year in the light of the prevailing constraints.
“It is understood that the National Education Policy 2020 offers various courses to the students which also includes vocational courses, therefore additional classrooms to accommodate the increasing number of students, and teachers to teach the newly introduced courses have to be addressed first,” he said.
The VPP president further expressed concern over the government’s “unwillingness” to create teaching positions in the colleges which compelled the college authorities to create their own teaching positions, which are not at par with those of the UGC sanctioned posts. According to him, this would result not only in disparity in terms of pay scales, but also in terms of workload.
“The National Education Policy 2020 also stresses on the need to ultimately give autonomy to colleges, which will make it difficult for the State government to regulate the functioning of colleges and institutions, and therefore give them freedom to decide on the fee structure which will have a direct bearing on the students especially those from poor background,” Basaiawmoit added.
The VPP president also reminded about the decision of the State government to accept the CUET without taking into consideration the problem that the students have to encounter.
“A large number of students have been denied admission for their undergraduate courses due to lack of examination centers in the State and as they could not appear for said CUET exam. Therefore, the VPP does not want the same fate to await the students with regards to the National Education Policy,” Basaiawmoit said.