‘Private schools that are unable to obtain/renew recognition solely over land norms must not be closed down’

As a new academic year begins on Monday, private schools say they are looking at a difficult period ahead as they are confronted with challenges on different fronts.

From myriad procedures governing the renewal of recognition to concerns over the quality of ‘Samacheer’ syllabus to the land issue and clearances for school buses, associations representing private schools say they have their hands full in the coming year.

Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary, Matriculation and Higher Secondary Schools Welfare Association general secretary G. Krishnaraj says the private schools that are unable to obtain/renew recognition solely over the land norms must not be closed down.

A seven-member expert committee was constituted under the Director of School Education in May 2013 to fix the minimum land requirement for private schools. While it held meetings across the State, its recommendations are yet to be known.

Alluding to the recent closure of 49 schools in the district, he says this course of action will hit the education of many students and the livelihood of the school staff.

Tamil

He also expressed concern over the State Government’s move making Tamil language mandatory for all students taking Class X public examination from 2015-16, which followed the enactment of Tamil Nadu Tamil Learning Act in June 2006. While a group of schools moved the Supreme Court challenging the law, the petition was dismissed.

R. Visalakshi, president of Tamil Nadu Private Schools Association, says the schools were informed of the new rules for school buses only recently. “If we had been told about these new rules by April, the buses could have been re-fitted accordingly by May itself. Now, many schools are yet to obtain clearances for buses even as the schools are going to re-open on Monday,” she says.

Further, she says students are finding the Samacheer syllabus to be too easy. Many schools are trying to go beyond the curriculum and teach subjects that will improve the analytical thinking of students.

RTE Act

R. Lakshmanasamy, president of Pollachi Private Schools’ Welfare Association, says that confusion is prevailing over many provisions of the Right To Education (RTE) Act. Even some officials are not clear over this Act and are misguiding parents.

He also calls for immediate discussion over reimbursing the private schools the fees for students admitted in the past two years under the quota created by RTE Act.

More In: Coimbatore