TODAY -

Manipur Education Service: Its character ?

Dr Sarungbam Gunadhor *

Department of Education(S) Govt of Manipur logo



The Cabinet decision of the Government of Manipur for establishment of the Manipur Education Service is really pragmatic and encouraging, although belated. The decision, however, seems to be meant for school education only. It may be mentioned that efforts in this regard have already been made in 2002.

The Manipur Education Service Draft Rules, 2002 (Higher Education) was submitted by a college teacher organisation in Manipur to the Director of Education (U), Government of Manipur, on 2nd January, 2002.

Consequently, a Review Committee of the Draft Rules was constituted consisting of 12 members with Commissioner (Hr. Edn) as Chairman vide order No. 7(10) /97-5/ Hr. Edn., dated 22nd October, 2002.

But unfortunately, it could not be materialised. Historically, the Indian Education Service (IES) was established in 1896 by the then British Government in India but abolished it in 1924 on the recommendations of the Lee Commission.

The New Education Policy (NEP) 1986 proposed to revive the Indian Education Service as an All-India Service for which the basic principles, functions and procedures of recruitment to this service will be decided in consultation with the state governments. The proposal itself is still a dream.

Character of Educational Service: Now, the Government of Manipur have boldly decided to constitute the education service, but what we need to consider is the character of the service. The Kothari Commission recommended that "the character of an educational service will have to be different from the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) or other Central Services".

The Commission further recommended that "in education, administration is a service agency to teaching and research and not their master, and that there should always be a possibility for an educational administrator to come back to teaching or research and for a teacher to go over to the administrative side on a tenure appointment" (Source: Report of the Education Commission,1964-66, Vol. 4, pp. 837-838, New Delhi: NCERT, 1970).

It implies that educational administration as different from other types of administration involves teaching and research, that educational administration is to be entrusted not to the generalists like IAS but to the specialists who deal with teaching and research, and that an educational administrator should be a teacher and vice-versa. It may be noted that every service will have its own basic principle so is an educational service. If such an important public service is not constituted with this basic principle, then it will not be a meaningful service. We, therefore, need to take into account the basic character of an educational service when framing the rules.

Mode of Employment: Considering the character of an educational service as spelt out by the Kothari Commission, there may be two wings as administrative and teaching. It will be between these two wings that a horizontal mobility between the educational administrator and the teacher will take place for which a careful arrangement will have to be made so as to enable both of them to interchange with each other within the same grade for a stipulated period.

For example, the Education Secretary will come to teaching and research, while a teacher who is in the grade of the Education Secretary will go to administration on a tenure appointment. All the administrative posts of the Same grade may be made interchangeable. For example, if the Joint Secretary and the Director are of the same grade, the former may act as the latter and vice-versa. There may be a zone of consideration for giving tenure adminis trative or teaching assignment from amongst the members of the service.

Cadre: There may be two cadres as Manipur Education Service (School Education Cadre) and Manipur Education Service (Higher Education Cadre), although both the cadres are placed under a single umbrella. The existence of these two cadres will become necessary as there will be some differences in the requisite qualifications of the candidates at the entry point and other higher grades.

Administrative Jurisdiction: An educational service is a public service and at the same time its basic character is also different from other services; therefore, the whole Education Department, or units of administration, such as Secretariat, Directorate, and institutional levels should be under the administrative jurisdiction of the Manipur Education Service. Otherwise, the service will not be meaningful one at all.

Scales of Pay and Allowances: The scales of pay of the members of the administrative wing as cited earlier may be correlated with the scales of pay of the members of the teaching wing so that such a system may make for easier transferability between the two wings and promote traffic both ways. Some allowances may be given to the persons from both the wings who will be on a tenure teaching or adminis trative assignment So long as the person occupies the post to make up for any inconvenience or disadvantage.

In fine, if the Manipur Education Service is constituted on the basis of the character of the service in particular and if it can cover the Secretariat Education in general, then it would be a model of educational service in India. We need to examine every nook and corner of the service before a final decision is taken. An expert committee may be constituted for the purpose.


* Dr Sarungbam Gunadhor wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer is a Retd Reader, Department of Education, Imphal College
This article was posted on June 10, 2012 .



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