No reimbursement to schools, say activists

Sakal Times
Monday, 22 January 2018

Pune: City-based RTE activists have condemned the State government’s failure to follow RTE Act efficiently, thus threatening the educational opportunity of thousands of students.

The reactions came in after more than 3,000 schools in the State have decided to boycott the admissions under Right to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act to the students from economically backward sections of the society, because the government has failed to provide them reimbursement for the reserved 25 per cent seats.

Pune: City-based RTE activists have condemned the State government’s failure to follow RTE Act efficiently, thus threatening the educational opportunity of thousands of students.

The reactions came in after more than 3,000 schools in the State have decided to boycott the admissions under Right to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act to the students from economically backward sections of the society, because the government has failed to provide them reimbursement for the reserved 25 per cent seats.

Speaking about the issue, Education and Social Activist Nihal Kirnalli said, “The State government has failed in every aspect to improve the education system. It recently decided to shut down as many as 1,314 schools in the State and also passed a bill in the assembly allowing more private firms to open schools. These actions constantly deliver one message, which is to cripple the State Education System and allow private firms to make more money.”

He added that the government’s recent three harsh decisions are affecting more than 60 to 70 thousand children from the State and there is no accountability whatsoever.

Speaking to Sakal Times on an earlier occasion, RTE activist Mukund Kirdat had pointed out, “The government should compensate for the lost fees in time, as it would help students balance their expenses. In the past three years, the government has paid hardly 10 per cent of the total reimbursement. This will hamper the interest of the RTE students. The government has to implement these provisions more carefully to avoid this.”

He also said that the government said that the schools try to find loopholes to avoid admissions under RTE when they do not get reimbursement from the government. “Many schools, despite having kindergarten facility, in records show that the schools start from the primary level classes. Doing this, helps them to show that their capacity is full and they cannot accommodate more students for RTE quota. The situation might change if the government agrees to give full reimbursement to the schools,” he added.

Matin Mujawar, Education Activist of Shikshan Hakka Manch, said that in this fight between the schools and the government, ultimately it is the students who are going to suffer. 

“While the schools are providing education to the economically backward students, the due reimbursement for the same is their right, and the government should provide it to them. It is not fair to ask them to give their services for free. This will, in turn, deprive many children of their right to education. The government needs to take this issue seriously as soon as possible,” Mujawar stated.

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