The university vice-chancellors have complained to Higher Education Minister Bandula Gunawardane yesterday that a certain lady official at the Finance Ministry was blocking the approval for appointing employees to their academic staff in keeping with the recommended cadre.
The minister met the Vice-Chancellors yesterday to discuss the increased intake for the next academic year in conformity with the election promise given by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa that all the advanced level qualifiers would be afforded opportunities for graduate studies.
He told Daily Mirror that though there should be one teacher for every 18 students, this ratio could not be maintained even for 100 undergraduates as far as some academic disciplines were concerned.
The minister said the vice-chancellors complained against a lady official of the Finance Ministry for this predicament.
“I agreed to take up the matter with the authorities concerned,” he said and added that he instructed the Vice Chancellors to submit proposals in a couple of weeks so as to increase the intake and directed them to begin new degree courses on job-oriented subjects.
“We need at least 50,000 graduates on software engineering to be produced annually. But, we recruit only 30,000. If we increase it, software development turned into a US$5 billion industry,” the minister said.
He also asked the university authorities to prepare courses for engineering technology, biotechnology and information technology. (Kelum Bandara)