It claimed that the calendar proposed by the JNU registrar has parts which have “retrospective effect” and would adversely impact both students and teachers.
“The JNUTA rejects the calendar that has no consideration for the academics and the process by which it is being sought to be pushed through. The registrar of JNU had written to the members of the Academic Council informing them that an agenda to consider the academic calendar 2020-21 for the continuing and new students is enclosed and they should convey their approval by mail by October 20,” JNUTA president DK Lobiyal said in a statement.
It said that a request for consideration could lead to disagreement with the proposed calendar or alternative opinions on it.
“However, the possibilities have been ruled out not only in the language of the letter but also the process through which such ‘approval’ is being sought. It has been reduced to mere formality where statutory bodies are expected to merely rubber stamp for something which has already decided by the university,” the statement added.
The teachers’ association noted how according to the proposed calendar, classes for continuing students were to “commence” from the second week of September 2020 and the last date for adding and dropping of courses was October 4.
“What happens to the duration of the monsoon semester in different centres if this starting date was not actually the one in practice everywhere. Neither did the administration ascertain how many continuing students had not managed to take their examinations and would need to take them when the University reopened,” the JNUTA claimed.
Talking about the sequencing of the monsoon and winter semesters of 2020-21 in the proposed calendar, the association said that if implemented, it would mean that many teachers would be teaching continuously without any break or vacation up to the end of the academic year 2021-22 and neither would any of the batches of students get any significant break between semesters.
“This is because the lack of concurrence of the semesters for the continuing and fresh students has been increased beyond what has become inevitable. So, for continuing students, the two semesters are compressed into the nine-month period from September to May, which comes on the back of a conclusion of the winter semester for most students in September,” it said.
“On the other hand, for the new students being admitted in 2020-21, classes are to begin only in December and the two semesters have to be concluded by July 2021 – a period of just 8 months,” it added.