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Kannur: Teachers who gave birth during the summer vacation will be required to pay back the salary received if this period is not included in their maternity leave.
The recovery of the salary amount will apply to those who did not mention the actual day of delivery while applying for maternity leave. A notice was recently sent to a teacher in this category.
Some teachers have “illegally” taken additional leave to a maximun of sixty days by delaying maternity leave application. Since schools remain closed during summer vacation, some teachers apply for six-month maternity leave only in June, even if they deliver the baby in May, April or even March, in some cases. However, teachers are required to attend school during summer vacation for evaluation, training, admission and other purposes.
Document verification has been conducted in all schools across the state. Teachers who gave birth during this period were asked to provide the birth certificate of their child. Head teachers have submitted a report through district education officers. Data related to births during the vacation period had already been collected. However, now there is a proposal asking teachers to repay salaries in cases where the actual date of delivery was concealed in an attempt to claim more leaves.
After this issue was observed in multiple districts, it was suggested that the child's birth certificate should be provided. Earlier, only a medical certificate was required. Substitute teachers on daily wages will replace those on leave, and the government will cover their wages.
If the delivery date is changed, any excess salary received will have to be returned. For instance, a pregnant teacher attended school on February 15, 2007, and went into labour the same night. She gave birth that night, which coincided with Sivaratri. She applied for maternity leave on February 17. However, two days salary of February 15 and 16 have now been ordered to be repaid based on the guidelines specifying that maternity leave should commence on the day of delivery.
In another case, a teacher gave birth at the end of March. Initially, casual leave was granted. The maternity leave started June 1. In this situation, the teacher will be required to repay her salary for more than 60 days.