ISLAMABAD: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan has accepted most of the demands of university teachers serving under the tenure track system.
On Monday, a large number of teachers protested outside the HEC. They said that about 6,000 university teachers work in the country under this framework and have faced many problems that have not been resolved by the HEC or universities. Their efforts bore fruit, when HEC Chairman Dr. Tariq Banuri, newly named Executive Director Dr. Shaista Sohail, and Member of Operations Fateh Marri met with a delegation of protesting teachers.
A few days ago, tenure track teachers, led by Dr. Khurram Shahzad, held a press conference in which they said neither the HEC nor universities have been owning faculty members, who are being exploited.
Dr. Shahzad said the HEC had set up a committee to resolve issues facing tenure track faculty, but for almost a year the recommendations of the committee had gone unattended. Daily increases were received by teachers working under the basic pay scale formula, he said, but tenure track teachers have not received any increase for many years.
The protesting teachers demanded their issues regarding grace periods, leave policies, early tenure, pending endorsement cases, journal policies, salaries increases, and pensions should be resolved immediately with clear policies and notifications. Most of their demands were accepted after the meeting with the HEC officials.
A press release issued by the HEC on Monday said Dr. Banuri assured faculty members working under the tenure track system that the commission had already decided to accept their genuine demands. “After a detailed discussion on different demands by the TTS faculty, it was decided that within the current week HEC will issue three notifications,” the statement said.
It added that one notification will pertain to an increase in the length of tenure of faculty members from six to nine years with revised criteria, and the two others are related to clarification regarding administrative positions previously held by tenure track faculty as well as the future course of action for holding such positions
In a month’s time, two more notifications will be issued, one for the revised salary structure of tenure track faculty members and the other for their pension scheme, taking into account the decisions of the Commission. Other issues raised by the faculty members will also be considered by the HEC.
The news was originally published in DAWN on 13th October 2020