Point chart to bring teachers closer home

In a bid to woo the teaching community, the Mamata Banerjee government will amend the West Bengal School Service Commission Act to enable them to stay in close proximity to their homes and their spouses.

The teacher-friendly transfer policy will come into force after the amendment is passed by the Assembly during the winter session beginning Friday.

Officials of the School Education Department said the new policy will help a large number of teachers who have been posted at places far from their homes and family. "We have proposed to amend the Act so that the teachers who have served a particular school for over five years can seek transfer to other schools near their homes," said Arnab Roy, Secretary, School Education Department.

The new policy will have a points system for prioritising the transfers, in which women teachers will have an edge over their male colleagues. Every woman teacher will be allotted five more points than her male counterpart. Moreover, a woman teacher with children below 10 years will be given three additional points. Those who joined the service before 2006 will get two points extra as incentives.

The chairman of West Bengal School Service Commission, Chittaranjan Mondal, said in case of multiple applicants for transfer to a specific school or zone, the points will help in determining who will get the desired posting. The teacher who will have most points will be at the top of the priority chart.

However, a section of experts have questioned the proposed policy as it could lead to compromising with quality of teachers. Sunanda Sanyal, an educationist, said if the government decides to transfer a teacher from a particular school within five years, then it would be difficult for them to concentrate on improvement of the school, and thus a school cannot retain the best brains.

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