They seek Chief Minister's intervention in the issue

Expressing disappointment with the school fees fixed by Justice Raviraja Pandian Committee, private and matriculation schools in Madurai have sought the quick intervention of Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa in the interest of schools, students and parents.

The covers containing fee particulars of private/self-financing schools in Madurai district were distributed to the schools through the office of the Chief Educational Officer here on Tuesday.

Correspondents of matriculation schools have expressed shock on how the Fee Determination Committee had arrived at the final figure of each school without taking into account the inflation rate.

“The revised fee determined by the committee headed by Justice Pandian was shocking. Most of the private schools are not convinced by the fee fixed by the panel. We will meet the new Chief Minister soon and seek her intervention,” A. Jayapaul, president, Association of Madurai Matriculation Schools Correspondents' Forum, said.

List of schools in Madurai district, for whom the fee particulars were individually given, was displayed at the CEO office in Tallakulam here. Officials said that totally 297 private schools in Madurai district have got the fee detail covers out of the total 310 schools in the district. Thirteen schools in the district have not received the fee particulars.

Officials informed that 156 primary/nursery schools, 125 matriculation schools and 16 State Board schools got the fee fixed by the committee.

“We would like the CM to intervene and take positive steps because with this fee, we will not be able to run the school. When inflation is going up, how can we run schools with the same fee for three years?” AR.Ramanathan, correspondent, Dolphin Matriculation Higher Secondary School, Madurai, asked.

Mr. Jayapaul, whose Mary Ann School here was given about four per cent fee hike, has appealed to the parents to understand the schools' plight in the backdrop of rising expenditure particularly with teachers' salaries.

C.Ratnadurai, the correspondent of Seventh Day Adventist School at Kochadai in the city, too has said that the fee fixation was not up to the expected level as the annual fee of Rs.7,000 for LKG was not feasible.

“When parents expect best environment, good teachers and infrastructure, they will have to cooperate. We are also ready to understand their problems and let us hope for a good solution,” Mr. Jayapaul said and assured that the fees fixed by the committee would be displayed on the school notice board.

Mr.Ramanathan of Dolphin School has expressed fear that the schools would be forced to reduce the campus activities if the school fee is collected as per the committee's fixation.

Very difficult

A representative of the CEOA Matriculation Higher Secondary School in Madurai also expressed that the revised fee is still much lower. “It is very less at Rs.6,000 for LKG student. It will be difficult with this keeping in mind the salary component and infrastructure,” the school representative said.

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