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School federation seeks relaxation

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TO BE FLEXIBLE: Office-bearers of the Federation of Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary, Matriculation and Higher Secondary School Managements’ Associations addressing a meeting in Madurai on Wednesday.
TO BE FLEXIBLE: Office-bearers of the Federation of Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary, Matriculation and Higher Secondary School Managements’ Associations addressing a meeting in Madurai on Wednesday.

Special Correspondent

“Fee structure should not affect private schools”

MADURAI: The State Government has been urged to fix the school fee structure by taking into account the total expenses incurred by schools for salaries and maintenance.

An appeal was made here on Wednesday stating that the school fees to be collected from students, which will be fixed by the Government, should not affect the functioning of private schools in the State.

D. Christdas, president, Federation of the Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary, Matriculation and Higher Secondary School Managements’ Associations, told reporters that the committee formed to evolve fee structure for schools should look into the expenses incurred by various categories of schools.

Teacher-student ratio

“There are guidelines that teacher-student ratio has to be maintained in schools as per norms.

Salaries have to be paid for them and hence the association’s plea is to fix the fee structure in accordance,” he said.

Types of expenses

According to Mr. Christdas, there are 21 types of expenses for private schools, including staff salaries, electricity, maintenance, laboratory and furniture.

“The committee should consider all these details before fixing the fees and the association has already given a representation to the State Government in July,” he said.

The association sought certain relaxation on the rules issued to schools with regard to drivers for school vans and other school vehicles carrying students.

Mr. Christdas said that the Government stipulation of employing drivers only with 10 years of experience for school vans was difficult. “There is a shortage of drivers these days and hence the State Government can consider reducing it to five years. We understand the importance of students’ safety but the association feels that reducing the experience period form 10 years to five years will help the parents and schools as well because we can find drivers easily,” he observed.

Building tax

Another demand made at the association meeting was to stop collecting building tax from schools.

“The schools will have to ultimately collect it from parents and such a hardship can be avoided if the State Government does not collect tax for property/buildings from schools,” Mr. Christdas said.

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