PESHAWAR: After nearly a decade, primary school teachers in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) are set to get their long-awaited timescale increase and grade promotion policy after it was approved by the provincial government.
K-P Elementary and Secondary Education Media Advisor Najiullah Khattak confirmed to The Express Tribune that the government had approved the policy.
Khattak said that the teachers’ community, who had been protesting and demanding the policy for years, had presented a list of demands to the government which was approved on Monday.
According to the new policy, teachers would be promoted onto the next basic pay scale (BPS) based on the time they had served.
Khattak said under the approved policy, a primary school teacher, who is usually hired in BPS-12, can now be promoted to up to BPS-17; a subject specialist up to BPS-19 and a headmaster up to BPS-20.
It should be mentioned that primary school teachers have been struggling to get the timescale promotion policy approved for the past nine years since they usually end up retiring in the same BPS they were hired in.
The previous Awami National Party-led provincial government had approved the grade promotion policy, under which a primary school teacher could become a subject specialist or higher cadre official over time, but no timescale increase policy was approved.
In April, under the banner of the All Teachers Coordination Council (ATCC), primary school teachers once again began a protest, demanding timescale increases in all districts. They also boycotted classes.
This time their list of demands included timescale increase without any government-set conditions; promotion of teachers; regularisation of teachers appointed based on the NTS test; provision of teaching allowances; quota for sons; disbanding the government’s Independent Monitoring Unit; a complete audit of education funds; and paid leaves.
ATCC K-P Spokesman Azizullah Khan lauded the government for approving the teachers’ demands. He explained that primary school teachers are appointed in BPS-12 and they often retire in the same scale.
“Under the new timescale policy, a teacher would now be promoted to the next scale every five years until they reach the highest scale in their respective position,” Khan explained.
Similarly, with the newly-approved promotion policy in place, primary teachers can now be promoted to different cadres including, subject specialist, secondary school teacher and even headmaster.
All Primary Teachers Association (APTA) K-P President Malak Khalid Khan welcomed the government’s decision and congratulated teachers for their success. “It was our main demand and we have struggled for it since 2008. At last, we have succeeded,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 7th, 2017.
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