The Communist Party of India (Marxist) has urged the State government to make efforts for vacating the High Court interim stay on the private schools fee structure implemented by the government based on the recommendations of Justice Govindarajan committee.
“Based on the stay given by the High Court, the schools will collect (the old structure of) fees from parents in the interim period as the final hearing of the case would be taken up only on November 29,” party State secretary G. Ramakrishnan told reporters here on Thursday.
Stating that even those 4,000 schools that had accepted the Govindarajan panel report would now start collecting excess fees, he said it would create confusion for parents. “What will happen to those parents who could not afford to pay the exorbitant fees? Are they going to pull out their children?” he wondered.
He blamed the State government for its indifferent attitude that led to the High Court giving stay on the fee structure, which he said, affected lakhs of children and their parents. He said the entire process of appointing a committee, the recommendations it had made and its implementation by the government would go waste, if the stay was not vacated.
Though the CPI (M) was of the view that the fee structure recommended by the panel was slightly on the higher side, it wanted the government to implement it strictly, Mr. Ramakrishnan said. “Parents have been opposing the schools that were collecting excess fees. They have sought action against the violating schools. Had the government taken action against such schools and de-recognised some of them, it could have instilled fear among the management of other schools,” he said.
He recalled that the Supreme Court dismissed the plea of private schools stating that the State government had the right to regulate the fee structure in private schools. The parents were not aware of the fee structure in each of the schools, as it had not been displayed it on the notice boards. Some schools were not issuing receipts while some others were issuing receipts that did not reflect the amount paid. “The government has to consider the demands of the parents … but, it is silent as if it had no role at all on the issue.,” he added. The committee had fixed the fee structure only after going into the expenditure of the schools, including the salary of teachers.