September 24, 2020

RTE stick on 59 schools

Gaya: Fifty-nine private schools in the district have been served closure notice for non-declaration of seats under the Right to Education Act.

The Act stipulates 25 per cent seats going to children from poor sections of society having an annual income of less than Rs 3 lakh per annum. Such students are to be given free education by the respective school. The government gives a grant of Rs 6,500 per child to the schools.

Fifty-nine of the 281 registered private schools of the district, including the ones affiliated to CBSE and CISCE have not declared any seat under the RTE Act. According to district magistrate Abhishekh Singh, showcause notices have been issued to the schools and penal action, including de-recognition and fine would be imposed on the defaulting schools.

De-recognition by the district officials means that the schools cease to be a legal entity and they have to be closed down. There is also a provision of an initial fine of Rs 1 lakh against such schools. In case the schools operate after being de-recognised, penalty would be imposed on a daily basis. Parents too would be advised not to get their wards admitted to the schools facing imminent closure, said the DM. The list of schools facing de-recognition include Gyan Bharati Senior Secondary School, Tekari, Sarswati Vidya Mandir, Gaya Town, Jai Hind Public School, Gaya, Banat Model School, Sherghati and Kirk View School, Gaya Town. Kirk View, it may be recalled, is the only ICSE affiliated school of the district.

The district magistrate also said he would write to the affiliating bodies, including CBSE and CISCE to disaffiliate schools that do not conform to the RTE Act.

Despite non-compliance by 59 registered schools, the situation has improved substantially in the academic session 2018-19 as compared to the academic session 2017-18.

According to district programme officer Asghar Khan, as against 774 admissions in 2017-18, 1,368 children have already been admitted to Class I in the registered private schools in the session 2018-19. The number of seats available is 2,757. A selection list of 2,432 students applying online was released.

Of these 2,432, 1,064 of the selected students did not enrol themselves. The cause of non-enrolment of the selected students would be examined and the seat would be allotted to waitlisted applicants, said the DM. In order to ensure transparency, selection was made through the draw of lots.

RTI activist Brijnandan Pathak alleged that private schools are harassing and discouraging parents of selected students on the ground that due to their humble economic back grounds, their children would suffer from inferiority complex as their peers would be from a distinctly well-off backgrounds.

Courtesy: The Telegraph

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