While parents welcome the fixation of fees in private schools, a majority of private school managements say the fee structure finalised by the Private Schools Fee Determination Committee is unjustifiable.
As immediate fallout of the fee structure finalised by the committee, schools are contemplating cutting down co-curricular activities such as graduation day, annual day and technology-based teaching, freezing down on recruitment of teachers and any additional expenditure.
For the parents, how effectively the recommendations made by the committee are monitored is a cause of concern. But they unreservedly welcome the regulation. “The government should keep an eye on schools and ensure that they do not collect money as capitation fees and under other heads,” said K. Mohan, a parent.
But for most managements, the committee's direction to pay teachers as per the Sixth Pay Commission, for instance, has come as a shock. “Asking us to pay on a par with government school teachers and curtailing the fee of students is in no way justified. Based on the Pay Commission, the salary of teachers would range between Rs.20,000 and 40,000,” said Father A. Stanley Sebastian, secretary, Chennai Mylai Education Society, which manages around 24 aided primary and higher secondary schools in Madras Diocese. Not taking any new teachers would mean burdening the existing teachers and rendering many jobless, say management heads.
Representatives from around 500 schools that met in the city on Saturday said they were going to appeal to the government to revise the fee structure. Members wanted the Inspectorate to take action on schools based on complaints, rather than penalising all.