Activists visit 10 schools, notice discrepancies in procedures followed

Members of AHINDA, an organisation working for the cause of minorities and backward classes and members of School Resource Centres, an NGO, who visited different aided schools in the city on Friday, alleged discrepancies, and failure to adhere to rules. The visit was aimed at ascertaining aspects of admission process, fees, and whether the schools were following the norms laid down by the State Government.

They alleged that there were discrepancies in seven of the 10 schools that they visited.

Lolaksha, working president of AHINDA's Dakshina Kannada unit, who led the team, alleged that the schools were not notifying availability of seats. The schools had completed the admission process when they were expected to provide application and receive them till April 30. “These are the norms laid down in a circular issued by the Department of Public Instruction in December 2011,” he said.

About the fees, Mr. Lolaksha said: “They are not collecting the fees as per the calculation provided in the circular.” While one school was collecting Rs. 6,000, another collected Rs. 8,000 annually from a primary school student. The schools were not giving details to parents about the fees. “There is lack of awareness about this circular in the school,” he said.

The visit started from the Ramakrishna English Primary School.

Here, the team members found the school notice board identifying a few students who had not been promoted to the next class. The notice board had admission fees for each class. The team members said these two statements on the notice board were against the stipulations laid down by the State Government.

A member of the school staff told the team members that all questions about admission and fees could only be answered by the school principal, who was away on duty.

At St. Aloysius College Higher Primary School, a staff member told the team members that the school had been providing free education for Kannada-medium students between class 1 and 7.

The staff member said the school had been admitting students and not exceed the maximum capacity for each class.

Assistant Teacher of Canara Kannada Higher Primary School Mohini Shenoy told the team members that the school had been giving admission to every student, regardless of their disability. The school had been collecting Rs. 300 for each of the student coming to Balavadi (pre-nursery), which went towards providing food. The school staff had been going around to construction sites and bringing children of construction labourers to the school.

The AHINDA and School Resource Centre members visited the Canara English Higher Primary School, Canara Girls Secondary School, St. Agnes Aided Primary School, St. Agnes English Medium School, and Badaria English Medium Primary School.

They listed the discrepancies and submitted a report to Deputy Commissioner N.S. Channappa Gowda, who heads the District Education Regulation Authority.

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