PESHAWAR, April 7: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government on Saturday virtually abandoned the plan of much-trumpeted bifurcation of management and teaching cadres in elementary and secondary education (E&SE) department when the goals of bifurcation couldn’t be achieved in over a year, officials said.
They said that provincial Chief Secretary Ghulam Dastagir had approved the amended rules of management and teaching cadres, allowing transfer of officials to each other departments (teaching and management).
Earlier a year ago when the education department was bifurcated into management and teaching cadres, officials of both the cadres were not allowed transfer to the other cadre.
The decision to establish the management cadre was made by the Mutahidda Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) government in 2007, but it failed to implement its cabinet decision in this regard. Later, the Awami National Party-led provincial government commenced work for setting up a separate management cadre and it was formally established in early 2011.
The formation of management cadre was aimed at streamlining the affairs in the offices of executive district officers (EDOs) and directorate of the E&SE.
Prior to bifurcation of the two cadres, school principals from the teaching cadre were usually picked up as EDOs, who were often transferred from their posts back to the schools under pressure from the elected members belonging to ruling parties and high ups in the education department.
The government introduced the management cadre and banned transfer of EDOs back to schools in order to remove fear of transfer among them and ensure efficiency and smooth work in offices.
However, the sources said that the newly-recruited EDOs failed to deliver, while mismanagement and corruption increased in their offices because they had no fear of transfer from their posts.
The officials said that after two to three months of resuming charge, complaints started pouring against the EDOs.
They said that several lawmakers had also lodged complaints with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief minister against mismanagement by some of the EDOs.
The sources said that usually the lawmakers would complain against the EDOs for dodging them when they approached for some official work. Fingers were also raised at the Public Service Commission soon after appointments of EDOs in grade-19 because half of the recruited officers had already worked on such posts and their incompetence had been exposed to the department, officials in the education department said.
“Actually, the management cadre was established to get rid of the incompetent officers, but such officers were again recruited by the PSC,” the sources claimed.
So far, 23 EDOs in grade-19, 21 district officers (female) in grade-18, 241 assistant district officers (male) and 127 ADOs (female) in grade-16, and 27 deputy district officers (female) have been appointed while the appointment of DDOs and DOs (male) was in the pipeline.
The amendments in the rules of both the cadres were approved after few months of consultation because the education department wanted to save the department from embarrassment of rolling back its decision and restoring the old system, the officials claimed.
“With the approval of the amendments the management cadre stands virtually abolished because officials of both the cadres could now be transferred to each other cadres, which was the practice prior to the bifurcation,” they said.