Teachers flay educational budget as inadequate

Kathmandu, August 3:

Teachers’ associations and educationists have flayed the education budget of the fiscal year 2005-06, calling it “inadequate” to address the challenges of the educational sector.

Though the budget has been hiked in terms of money, it cannot solve the conundrums of the sector, they claimed. They were voicing their grievance at an interaction organised by the Education Journalist Group today.

“Maoists are forcibly shutting down private schools in villages and this has increased enrolment in public schools. To tackle the problem, the government has increased educational sector budget. Though this may help solve new problems, it will contribute less to the various educational goals set by prior five-year plans,” said Prof Bharat Pokharel, political economist at Tribhuvan University. The government every year introduces new programmes but these programmes are never implemented, Pokharel said.

Mohan Gewali, president of the Teachers’ Association said, “Goals like education-for-all and reducing the illiteracy rate will not be met by this kind of budget.” The government signed various accords like making 30,000 temporary teachers permanent prior to the budget and if issues like these are also incorporated in the budget we can say that the budget is not appropriate, he added.

The educational budget has been announced in such a way that the government will get good popularity, said Baburam Adhikari, president of the National Teachers’ Union. He flayed the budget for its failure to introduce comprehensive reforms for the educational sector.