PUNE: The Independent English Schools Association (IESA) has reiterated its stand on the admissions under Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, stating that they will not admit the students under the 25 per cent category until all their dues are cleared by the government.
According to the data provided by IESA, the government owes an amount of Rs 953 crore and the government has till date reimbursed only about Rs 150 crore.
Least to mention that this has created a chaotic situation among the parents and students. Although, the schools have refused to register, the government has auto registered these schools and hence, their names have appeared in the RTE list. In this tussle between the government and the private schools, it is the future of the students from the economically weaker sections of the society that has been threatened.
The existing students under RTE, though, wouldn’t be affected, said IESA.
A total of 23 schools in Pune and 64 in Pimpri Chinchwad are participating in this boycott.
The decision to boycott the RTE admissions in the State was made after the prolonged displeasure of the private schools, over the delay in the payment of the promised reimbursement against the 25 per cent RTE admissions in each school.
Speaking about the issue, Rajendra Singh, Secretary, IESA said, “Actually, the perception of the society towards private schools is that these schools that charge lakhs of rupees as fees, can sustain even if there is a delay in reimbursement of the fees under 25 per cent category. However, it’s difficult to function when the dues are not paid for five years in a line. Also, 70 per cent of the schools in the State is budget private schools (with annual fees less than 18,000). These schools are facing a great financial pressure.”
Singh questioned that while there is a budgetary provision for this, and the government has that money, then why delay?
IESA recently approached the Aurangabad High Court Bench through a writ petition where the court accepted the plea. The court has given an interim order that no coercive action should be taken against the given schools under the Federation of Schools Association in Maharashtra until the hearing on February 28 takes place. The Federation includes IESA, Private Unaided Schools Management Association (PUSMA) and The Unaided Schools Forum (USF).