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2 November, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Govt primary school management committees

Graduation must for presidents

HARUN UR RASHID, Dhaka
Graduation must for presidents

From now on, no one can become the president of a government primary school management committee (SMC) unless he/she is at least a graduate. In addition, the 11-member committee must comprise guardians of children belonging to the same school. If a person is elected SMC president twice, he/she will not be allowed to be elected for the same post anymore. The tenure of the SMC will be three years from the day of its approval by the authorities concerned. The headmaster will take steps to form the next committee before the tenure of the existing one ends.

Earlier, there were no such restrictions to being a member or the president of a school management committee at the primary level.

The government has finalised this through a policy for government primary school management committees. The policy is waiting to be signed and take effect.

State minister for primary and mass education, Md Zakir Hossain, told The Independent recently: “We have formulated the policy and it is at the final stages of approval. We have made some changes in it to make it more functional to help primary schools become more vibrant.”

“Earlier, there were no bar to becoming members of SMCs. Anyone could be presidents and members of the committee without educational qualification or guardianships. But, now, the SMC president has to have a graduate degree at least. At the same time, SMC members must be parents of students,” he added.

“There were various irregularities and allegations about SMCs in the past. We hope this new policy will bring discipline and order in schools,” he added.

Ministry sources said as soon as the policy becomes effective, no new committee would be allowed to be formed unless it followed the new rules.

The ministry has introduced such a policy because there were allegations or proofs of various irregularities and corruption against SMCs.

In various cases, SMCs used to put undue pressure on the school, hampering the administration and academic atmosphere.

As per the policy, the 11-member committee will have a president and a vice-president elected by guardians of students.

But the president will have to be a graduate. However, the policy does not say anything about the qualification of the rest of the members.

The headmaster or acting headmaster will be ex-officio member secretary of the committee.

The committee members will be selected by the school with suggestions from the local MP.

If an SMC member remains absent for three consecutive meetings without written permission, or dies, or is unable to continue, the person’s membership will lapse.

If any school fails to form the SMC due to valid reasons, an ad hoc committee can be formed for a maximum of six months and the regular committee has to be formed within six months.

About the functions of an SMC, the policy says it will submit a report on the attendance of students and the duties of teachers to the upazila/thana education officer every year in the months of  May, August and December.

The committee will also ensure that students are not subjected to corporeal punishment. It will approve the school level expenditure. The audit will not be acceptable if the expenditure report is not approved by the committee.

The SMC will also listen to students’ complaints or recommendations for one hour on the last day of every month.

The committee will also work for

inclusive education in the catchment area of the school and help conduct a survey of children fit to go to school.

It will supervise teaching in the pre-primary classes and take steps so that pre-primary students can get admitted to class-I.

The SMC will monitor construction of school buildings or reconstruction or renovation work to ensure quality of the work.

The SMC will have the power to spend a maximum of Tk. 3 lakh for renovation or repair work of the school. And, for that, the committee will need prior permission from the upazila education committee.

The committee will offer all forms of cooperation in selecting teachers for training to help improve the quality of education.

The SMC will provide cooperation to carry on the school meal programme.

The committee will be annulled if it is negligent in carrying out the government order, refuses or ignores any directive and entrusted duties, or is found to be involved in financial irregularities.

However, the policy will not be applicable in Rangamati, Khagrachhari, and Bandarbans.

The Chattogram Hill Tracts district councils can formulate their own policy on the basis of this policy.

“We hope the policy will bring discipline in schools and help increase the quality of education,” Zakir Hossain said.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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