Scores of parents from Pollachi, Mettupalyam and other parts of the district staged a sit-in protest on the premises of the Chief Educational Officer here on Saturday.

They were protesting against the “refusal” of private schools in the city to admit students under Right to Education (RTE) reservation quota.

The Act mandated private schools to set aside 25 per cent of their total seats to students from economically weaker section.

The protestors also claimed that the schools were refusing to even issue applications under this quota.

If a school received applications in excess of the seats, the schools had to adopt a ‘draw of lots’ to shortlist candidates in the presence of all parents, as per the RTE Act guidelines.

However, they asserted that several private schools went ahead with admissions and claimed that all seats had been filled up.

When the protestors met Chief Educational Officer A. Gnanagowri, they told her that the special grievance cell established in Coimbatore to deal with RTE Act-related complaints was ineffective in curbing malpractices.

V. Easwaran, state youth wing secretary of Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, who accompanied the parents, stated that that private schools were admitting students from affluent families and passing them off as candidates admitted under RTE Act quota.

These schools will be reimbursed the fees of these students by the Government.

When informed that a team had been constituted to scrutinise all admissions under RTE Act quota, he said that a similar exercise was undertaken last year too.

However, a Right to Information query revealed several violations in admissions last year.

He urged the Chief Educational Officer to scrap all admissions that violate the norms and recommend to the Department of School Education to give an undertaking that it would reimburse to private schools the fee of students admitted under the RTE Act quota.

Ms. Gnanagowri promised the protestors that their demands would be forwarded to the Department of School Education.

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