The practice of senior-most teachers holding the posts of heads of departments until their retirement in aided colleges affiliated to the University of Calicut may change soon.
The Senate of the varsity is expected to discuss a proposal to introduce rotation of these posts after a two-year term, at its meeting scheduled for January 17.
According to sources, a new statute (14.A) is likely to be introduced after Statute 14 of Chapter 2 (Conditions of Service of Teachers in Private Colleges) of the Calicut University First Statutes, 1979, in tune with Statute 18 of Chapter 3 of the Calicut University First Statutes, 1977.
The move follows a directive from the Kerala High Court to consider a representation by K.V. Arun, Senate member, and Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, Sree Kerala Varma College, Thrissur, and "take an appropriate decision".
Mr. Arun had earlier raised the issue with the Syndicate and the academic council as well.
Statute 18 (Head of a Department) in Chapter 3 (Teachers of the University) of the Calicut University First Statutes, 1977, has a sentence "… The Syndicate shall nominate the senior most Professor as the Head of the Department for a period of two years and at the end of two years, the next senior most Professor shall be nominated…"
The amendment is to change it as "…The Department Council shall nominate the senior most professor as the Head of the Department for a period of two years or retirement of the incumbent, whichever is earlier, and after expiry of the term, the next senior most Professor shall be nominated…" In departments which have no professor or associate professor, the senior-most assistant professor (in-charge) shall be nominated to the post.
No statutory provision
In his representation to the Vice Chancellor, Mr. Arun had pointed out that the post of the head of the department was an important administrative one in a college or university. Almost all universities and institutions of higher learning follow a system of rotation of headship in departments.
The departments in the University of Calicut too have this. However, its affiliated private colleges still follow a system based on seniority, as there is no statutory provision.
Mr. Arun claimed that introducing rotation in headship would help all teachers get the benefit of being involved in the administrative activities of colleges. It is important, as administrative experience is mandatory for appointments to higher academic posts, he said.
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