KARACHI, July 28: “We are proud to have been selected on merit after passing an exam, but someone tell us please why merit has no value here?” asked Jamila Baloch, a schoolteacher who passed the National Testing Service (NTS) exam for teachers in 2014 and is yet to receive notification about being regularised by the Sindh education department.
“At the moment we are all stuck in grade 15. Without the notification we won’t be promoted to grade 16. We are also not entitled to benefits such as transfers or [to] be put on the seniority list for promotions. We cannot even apply for headmaster and headmistress seats and the related training programme,” she said.
The teachers who have passed NTS and the Sindh University test from all over the province in 2014 had gathered outside the Karachi Press Club to protest and highlight their grievances on July 27. “Stop the bloodbath of merit!” they chanted.
Gul Leghari, another teacher, said that they were all under severe mental pressure regarding their careers and not getting regularised for three years now.
“Please tell us how a teacher who is constantly under stress can concentrate on teaching?” said Bushra Begum, a teacher.
Mukhtiar Lashari, a protesting teacher, said teachers selected on merit, and who deserve the utmost respect, have always been treated shabbily by the government.
The teachers aired their demands based on five points: All teachers showing merit be regularised; all teachers who have passed the exams be paid a teaching allowance; all teachers who have passed the NTS be given grade 16 like the high school teachers; remove restriction of transfers for all NTS-passed teachers; make the NTS teachers eligible to apply for higher positions.
The teachers urged Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah to look into solving their issues. They said they would not move from outside the press club until their grievances have been addressed.
Published by Daily Dawn on July 28, 2017