School managements get interim stay

The State government is cracking down on schools that offer the State Board syllabus for Standard XI and XII under ‘Samacheer Kalvi’ (uniform syllabus), but follow the Central Board of School Education (CBSE) or the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) syllabus from Standard I to X.

The Joint Director, Higher Secondary Education, Chennai, recently issued show-cause notices to many schools, and followed through by cancelling the permission granted to a couple of schools in the southern districts to offer Higher Secondary Education as their replies were not deemed to be satisfactory.

The affected schools approached the Madras High Court bench here and obtained an interim stay on the Joint Director’s order cancelling their permission to hold higher secondary classes.

Advocate Isaac Mohanlal, who appeared for the school managements in a case in the Madras High Court bench recently, said the School Education Department cancelled the recognition granted to the schools by referring to a Government Order issued on July 26, 2001.

The order applied only to ‘truncated schools’ which were once offering only higher secondary education without having classes from Standard I to X.

“The G.O. was issued 12 years ago to discourage stand-alone institutions with Standard XI and XII alone. It cannot be cited to cancel the recognition of regular schools that are offering Standard I to X as well, though under different streams such as the CBSE and the ICSE,” he said.

Ever since the State government scrapped the common entrance examination for admission to engineering and medical colleges and decided to admit students on the basis of their Plus Two marks, parents prefer their children to have higher secondary education under the State Board syllabus as the CBSE and the ICSE are considered to be difficult to score high marks.

“It is not the stand of the government that students studying in the CBSE or the ICSE schools up to Standard X cannot join another school offering Standard XI and XII under the State Board syllabus. If there is no embargo on joining another school, then why not allow the same school where they had undergone the substantive part of their education to impart higher secondary education under the State Board syllabus,” asked S.Srinivasa Raghavan, a second advocate who was also representing the school management in a case.

He said it was the School Education Department which had given permission to many CBSE and ICSE schools across the State to have only higher secondary classes under the State Board syllabus. The permissions were granted after the G.O. was issued. “It is not fair to cite the old G.O. for cancelling the recognition of well-established schools,” he said.