The law enacted by the Tamil Nadu government to bring in a uniform school education system, upheld by the Madras High Court, has been challenged in the Supreme Court.
A batch of appeals came up for admission on Monday before a Bench of Justice P. Sathasivam and Justice B.S. Chauhan, questioning the High Court judgment dated April 30. Senior counsel C.A. Sundaram argued that though the State had the legislative power to enact a law, it could not create a parallel authority not contemplated under the national curriculum.
Additional Advocate General P. Wilson intervened to point out that the common curriculum was implemented from this academic year for Standards I and VI. However, when Mr. Sundaram insisted on production of certain additional documents in support of his arguments, the Bench adjourned the hearing to Friday.
In the appeals, the Association of Matriculation Schools and Managements in Tamil Nadu, parents of several students and others stated that the object of the enactment of Tamil Nadu Uniform Systems of School Education Act, 2010 was to bring down the standard of matriculation schools to match with government schools and to keep Tamil Nadu children away from the benefit of national curriculum.
They were shocked to see the syllabus and textbooks prescribed by the government under this Act.
The appellants said the Act “clearly puts children 5 years backward to the children studying national curriculum and other better syllabus.” It was pointed out that the syllabus prescribed for Standard I was completed by children of matriculation schools in kindergarten class. They said the State government, instead of making improvements in the composition of the State Board schools by enabling managements of government schools to have better infrastructure and better qualified teachers, passed the impugned legislation, bringing down the standards of all the systems in the name of unification of all the four Boards.
The SLPs sought the quashing of the High Court judgment and an interim stay of its operation.