Haryana govt bars teachers for carrying cell phones in classrooms

Chandigarh
3 Aug 2017

The Haryana government today issued fresh set of guidelines to ensure that teachers working in state-run schools do not take their mobile phones to the classrooms, except if it is required as an academic aid. Should a teacher feel the need to use mobile phone as an academic aid, they will still have to take prior permission for carrying it inside the classrooms, as per the guidelines which come into force with immediate effect. "And if a teacher happens to head the institution, they will have to take care that neither they nor other teachers indulge in this fancy as fresh guidelines have been issued by the Haryana Education Department in this regard," an official statement said here today. "It (mobile phone) shall be kept stashed away in the staff room or in an area earmarked by the head of school...If for some unavoidable reasons, mobile phone is required to be taken to the class-room for academic use by a teacher, prior permission should be taken from the head of school for reasons to be recorded in a register to be maintained for this purpose," it said. To facilitate any emergency communication about teachers, it shall be ensured that the head of school makes available two contact numbers to all teachers. These two phone numbers for emergency call can be that of the head of school, the second senior most in-charge of the school, or clerk, or any other arrangement deemed fit by the head of school, say the guidelines. Use of mobile phone during non-class hours shall be confined to the area away from the classes. The students should be saved from the disturbance of external influence of mobile phones, it further stated. "All inspecting officers, whether on regular inspection or surprise inspections, shall check whether compliance of these instructions is being made meticulously or not. In case of any violation, action against the head of school shall be proposed by the inspecting officer. "If any substantive complaint is received from students or general public, that the guidelines are being violated on a campus, the head of that school shall be held squarely accountable," the statement added. The guidelines stem from the observation that many teachers take mobile phones to class-rooms during teaching hours for personal, not professional use, it said. "This amounts to misusing and diverting teaching hours to other purposes which are unproductive and do not in any way contribute to academic improvement of schools. This has to be checked. "Mobile phone has recently emerged as the single gadget which has started consuming class time of some teachers. Social media or other entertainment scopes of mobile phones hardly contribute anything towards the syllabus which is to be taught to the students on the school campus," it said. It also said that there may be sporadic creative instances where a teacher may want to use a mobile phone for creative academic purposes. "Yet, if in the name of rare creativity a no-holds-barred situation is allowed on the campuses, undesirable consequences are bound to rise".(PTI)