Higher Education

Higher Education

Science junior colleges get 30 days to set up biometric attendance system

PUBLISH DATE 16th June 2018

In a crackdown on integrated programmes, the state government has made it mandatory for all science junior colleges to install biometric attendance systems on their premises to mark students’ attendance. To be piloted in Mumbai, Pune, Nashik, Nagpur and Aurangabad, the move requires junior colleges to do the needful in a month or face de-recognition.

A government resolution (GR) issued on Friday said all aided, unaided and self-financed junior colleges will have to install the biometric attendance machines within a month. Junior colleges in more cities are expected to be added to the initiative soon.

Popular among students in the science stream, integrated programmes are offered by some junior colleges and coaching classes as a tie-up where either college may be skipped altogether while attending the coaching class or where the coaching class teachers conduct lectures in the junior college.

Last July, school education minister Vinod Tawde had announced the introduction of biometric attendance from this June to end malpractices.

The GR said: “Complaints have been received against students that instead of attending college lectures, they sit in private coaching classes and attend only practicals in the colleges. It has been observed that many colleges have signed a memorandum of understanding with the private coaching centres.”

The department also asked all education inspectors (secondary) to take a review and submit a report after visiting all colleges. Inspectors should also conduct surprise visits periodically to check whether the machines are in working condition or not, said the GR.

“It is a good move but the education department needs to arrange for manpower to be able to do physical checks,” said Narendra Bhamwani, former president, Maharashtra Class Owners Association (MCOA). “Otherwise, the junior colleges will install the biometric machines on the premises of the coaching classes where the students come every day.”

Some parents and students were worried by the decision. “We have already enrolled with a tutorial class and they have asked us to take admission in a particular junior college. Now we are worried how this will pan out,” said a parent.

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