To address the shortage of 30,000 teachers in Basic Education Schools nationwide, the government will train 10,000 teachers a year starting in the next academic year, said U Win Maw Tun, deputy minister of Education.
He was answering Pyithu Hluttaw MPs who asked about the teacher shortage in their constituencies. “Projects and targets are used to appoint staff on a yearly basis,” he said.
Research shows that 33,681 new teachers are needed throughout the country, including 11,350 high school teachers, 12,331 middle school teachers and 10,000 elementary school teachers. This requirement will be fulfilled over three years due to current budget shortages.
The plan is to appoint 11,227 teachers in the 2018-2019 academic year, 11,227 in 2019-2020 and 12,027 in 2020-2021.
Although schools are permitted to upgrade from elementary to middle school and from middle school to high school, they can’t appoint enough teachers, said U Stefan, MP for Kyinetone township in Shan State.
“The intention is good to upgrade to a high school, but there are not enough teachers, son Panlin High School students cannot pass the matriculation exam, while students from big cities pass it easily,” he said.
U Ye Win Tun, Pyithu Hluttaw MP for Pauk township, said that people in his constituency had asked for more teachers. “Villagers are raising funds for their children and to hire degree holders and those who pass the matriculation exam to improve education,” he said.
Although educational expenses are a priority in the country’s yearly budget, education still lacks resources.
From April to September, the Ministry of Education will allocate K807.15 billion for education, the fourth-highest budget provided to a sector. However, education still has to compete for funds with other sectors, such as military spending and road building.
“The proposals for road construction and tarring will cost around K2 billion but are being examined again,” said U Tin Tun Naing, MP for Seikkyikanaungto township and secretary of the Pyithu Hluttaw’s Projects and Financial Development Committee, on Monday.