Teacher absenteeism has been one of the key impediments to an effective and working education apparatus in developing countries. It not only has significant implications for student enrolment but also for learning outcomes.
Alif Ailaan’s identified five key areas of governance and management of public sector schools that include:
- (i) absenteeism
- (ii) transfers and postings
- (iii) political connections
- (iv) incentives structure for teachers and administrators
- (v) management practices
This study not only looks into the surprising results of teacher attendance in two districts of the Punjab, but also sheds light on issues such as frequency of transfer of teachers and school administrators and factors influencing such results. It examines the political influence on decisions made in the education department and also scrutinises the incentive structure (or the lack of) offered to teachers and the subsequent job satisfaction levels.
The unexpected results in terms of an excellent teachers’ attendance rate demonstrates the effectiveness of teacher management in these districts. The less number of politically connected teachers indicates an increase in merit-based recruitment. However, despite this significant progress, there still lacks a data regime that can determine the improvement in learning outcomes (if any) as a result of good teacher attendance.