The decision has been made in the wake of complaints by parents and students stating that the use of mobile phones by teachers impairs their teaching process in class.
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“The complaints were found to be true in surprise checks by administrative officials. The teachers were found to be busy on social media, exchanging messages or playing games on their phones,” the order issued on March 22 said.
Following this, all teachers in government and semi-government schools, intermediate colleges have been directed to hand over their phones to the headmaster/principal of their school or college during working hours. In case of an emergency, like one related to a family member’s illness, or any other medical exigency, the head of the institution will allow them to use their phones, the order added.
Rajendra Baliyan, a retired teacher and academic activist, said, “Such a step to instill a sense of discipline among teachers in educational institutions had never been taken earlier.”
A principal, on the condition of anonymity, said, “Such an order was uncalled for. Teachers do not use mobile phones in classrooms, or in any other manner that harms students’ interests.”
However, PB Municipal Inter College principal O P Goniyal told
TOI that the order will solve the problem he faces as a principal. “Teachers do not listen when I object to the use of mobile phones in the college campus during duty hours. The DM’s order will instill fear among them.”
Besides, the order said, there will be inspections in schools at regular intervals and if any teacher is found carrying a mobile phone or using it to talk to someone, browse through social media or play games, due action against the head of the institution as well as the teacher will be taken.