The government is likely to publish next week the final list of non-government educational institutions that have been brought under the Monthly Payment Order (MPO).
However, almost 71 percent of the institutions that applied for MPO facilities have been rejected for not being able to meet the requisite conditions, confirmed sources at the Ministry of Education.
A total of 9,500 institutions from around the country submitted applications, from which the ministry selected 2,761 schools, colleges and madrasas.
A list will be published after Education Minister Dr Dipu Moni, who has been on a personal tour abroad since August 11, comes back on Sunday next.
The list, which is at present with the Prime Minister's Office for the approval of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, may come back to the Education Ministry next week, said a ministry official preferring anonymity.
The ministry will then publish it, he added.
Md Sohrab Hossain, senior secretary (secondary and higher education division) of the ministry, said the listed educational institutions will continue enjoying MPO status as long as they can meet two conditions.
First, they must have 70 percent pass rate in public exams, and second, they must have a multimedia classroom.
If an institution fails to fulfil any one condition or both, the ministry will cease the MPO facilities temporarily until the conditions are met again, he added.
The MPO is the government's share in the payroll of the non-government education institutions.
Under the scheme, the government gives 100 percent basic salary to the teachers of non-government schools. The teachers also get a lump sum amount as other allowances from the MPO.
Meanwhile, a group of influential people, including ministers, lawmakers and top level Awami League leaders, have been lobbying with the authorities concerned to include their chosen institutions on the MPO list.
But no one can interfere into the work, ignoring the MPO Regulation 2018, as a special software developed by Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) has been used to select these institutions based on the set criteria.
The fresh inclusion of institutions in the MPO scheme will annually cost the government about Tk1,290 crore additionally.
Of the total, Tk750 crore will be spent for 1,763 schools and colleges, while Tk540 crore for 486 technical institutions and madrasas.
Currently, about five lakh teachers and employees working at some 28,000 non-government post-primary educational institutions are paid 100 percent basic salaries and some benefits under government payroll.
In 2010, 1,624 educational institutions were brought under MPO for the last time.
Earlier, Dr Dipu Moni, while talking to The Business Standard, said, "We have been trying to provide MPO facilities to all qualified institutions.
"We will do everything to make the people of the country educated to earn Bangladesh the status of a developed nation."
On the other hand, Principal Golam Mahmudunnabi Dollar, president of Non-MPO Educational Institution Teachers and Employees Federation, expressed fear that exclusion of so many institutions might ignite a movement.
He said the government should bring all the recognised institutions under MPO facilities. Otherwise, disqualified institutions will launch a movement on a humanitarian ground.
Criteria to get into the govt payroll
According to the MPO Regulation 2018, an institution can apply for the MPO after fulfilling the following six criteria:
i. Co-education institutions or boys' junior high schools must have 200 students in urban and 150 in rural areas.
ii. Co-education or boys' high schools in urban areas should have 300 students, while the rural ones should have 200.
iii. Schools and colleges should have 450 students in urban and 320 in rural areas.
iv. Higher secondary colleges in towns must have 200 students and rural ones 150 students.
v. Degree colleges in towns must have 250 students and in villages 200 students.
vi. In each class, 60 students in urban and 40 students in rural areas must participate in exams, and out of them, 70 percent must pass the exams.
Moreover, educational institutions are given marks based on several aspects.
For academic recognition, an institution will obtain 25 marks. An institution, which is less than 10 years old, will get five marks for every two years, while those crossing 10 years will get 25 marks.
For having the requisite number of students, the institution will get 25 marks. If it surpasses the requisite number of students, it will get 5 marks in addition for each 10 percent increase.
However, the MPO Regulation 2018 relaxed some conditions for establishing educational institutions in socially and geographically uneven, hilly, haor-baor and char areas, and in areas where females, and physically and mentally challenged people lag behind in education.
On the latest list, 60 institutions have been included from 60 backward upazilas. On special considerations, 62 institutions have also been incorporated into the MPO list, ministry sources said.