Highlighting the reason for the state’s poor status on basic education, the Gujarat government in its draft report of the National Education Policy (NEP) has stated that the schools in the region are devoid of quality teachers when they go for maternity leaves.
According to the government records, more than 96,000 teachers are women and a woman teacher gets 180 days of maternity leave, while a man gets only 15 days of paternity leave.
High number of women teachers and subsequent maternity leaves were listed among the 70-odd factors affecting elementary education, said the draft report, which was prepared by state education department.
It suggested to create a reserve of teachers to combat the problem of frequent maternity leaves.
It also cited “illiterate parents”, “lack of motivation among students” among the reasons for poor results. Besides suggesting penal action on parents whose children are irregular in school, the education department proposed implementation of “equal work, equal pay” rule as a measure against underperforming teachers.
“These are the suggestions received from various stakeholders. The report tried to involve everyone associated with education, even from villages. We have sought suggestions on improving quality of education from various stakeholders, including media houses,” said state Education Minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama.