While the State government had earlier announced that all teachers in government and government-aided schools would get free laptops, now they have exempted computer teachers from the freebie citing that these teachers have access to computers/laptops at school.
A senior official from Special Implementation Programme Department, which monitors the distribution of laptops for both students and teachers in the State, told DT Next that so far about 28,000 teachers have received laptops as on January this year.
“At present, about 2.2 lakh teachers, who are working in the government schools, will be beneficiaries,” he said adding that at present priority is being given to the higher secondary teachers.
An official from the School Education Department said that at present there are about 5,000 computer teachers working in government and government aided high and higher secondary schools. “Similarly, about 10,000 PG teachers take computer classes for the students in middle schools,” he added.
Justifying government decision to ignore computer teachers to avail laptop scheme, he said, “Since computer teachers already use laptops in schools, they do not require another computer and therefore, they were not added into the beneficiaries list.”
The official also pointed out that the government had already received several request from the computer teachers to include them in the laptop beneficiary list. “Requests and feedbacks will be discussed in future,” he said.
Opposing the government’s decision to neglect computer teachers in the laptop scheme, Tamil Nadu Teachers Association President P K Ilamaran said that all the teachers have the rights to avail the scheme. “It is unfair to ignore them. Everyone should be treated at same level,” he added. “Therefore, authorities should take immediate measures to distribute laptops to computer teachers also,” he said.