Of the 1,500 government school teachers in Tamil Nadu, whose salaries were withheld since April 2019 for not completing Eligibility Test (TET) even after stipulated time, a vast majority is in fear of losing jobs as less than even 5 per cent of them could clear TET, results for which were out on Monday and Tuesday.
Sources from Tamil Nadu Teacher’s Recruitment Board (TNTRB), which conducts TET, said despite government imparting free TET training to the affected teachers well before the exam, almost all the 1,500 teachers could not clear it and most of them flunked by scoring less than 50 out of 150 marks.
“More than 95% of the affected teachers reported they did not clear the test. A handful might have cleared but chances for even that are remote,” a senior official from TRB said.
Tamil Nadu Teacher’s Association President P K Ilamaran, who is spearheading a move to get a solution for the affected teachers said, “None of them have cleared TET this time too. The government should release all the pending salaries and should give them exemption from TET,” he said.
According to the norms, a teacher, coming under Other Caste (OC), should get at least 90 marks to qualify for TET. Similarly, teachers under backward class, should score minimum 82 marks out of the total 150.
K Suresh, a graduate teacher at a government-aided school in Nanganallur in the city, said since the TET paper was very tough compared to the previous version, he scored only 25. “At present we are clueless what the government is going to do with us,” he added.
He pointed out that questions in all the subjects in TET such as Child Development and Pedagogy, Tamil, English, Mathematics, Science and Social Science were complicated and like him, most of the teachers could not even attend it.
Another female teacher working in another government-aided school in Pallavaram, who did not wish to be named, said though it was her third TET attempt, she was only able to score 12 marks. “Free training given by the government was not enough. More has to be done,” she said.
A senior official from the Directorate of School Education made it clear that though the government is yet to decide about the future of the affected teachers, authorities will go by the rule laid by NCTE. “The government would take a decision soon and would issue an order,” he added.