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Friday, 20 April 2012

DEBATING SCHOOL FEE


DEBATING SCHOOL FEE


DEBATING SCHOOL FEE
When Government can run its schools with a particular amount of expenditure, we see no reason as to why an unaided private school charge fee from the fee-paying parents more than the amount of expenditure per child spent by the Government on its students. If any unaided school still claims higher amount of fee, such school has to satisfy the Directorate of Education on the basis of its financial records.
The Government of NCT of Delhi, Directorate of Education by its circular dated 21.03.2012 has approved an amount up to Rs.1190/- as expenditure per-child per month on elementary education for re-imbursement to private unaided schools during session 2011-12 in respect of students admitted from economically weaker section and disadvantaged groups. It has also been decided that no re-imbursement shall be made to schools, which have been allotted land by Government at concessional rates to the extent, schools are under obligation to admit students from weaker section as per terms and conditions of the Lease/ Land allotment Letter.
It is interesting to note that the said amount of Rs. 1190/- is based on the fact that the Government of Delhi in the academic year 2011-2012 has spent Rs.1190/- per child per month on the elementary education of the students studying in their own schools. We all know that the Government of Delhi, Directorate of Education has a huge physical and academic infrastructure. All the teaching and non-teaching staffs are paid Pay and Emoluments as per the Recommendations of the Central Pay Commission. We also know that lot of financial wastage takes place in the Government management system. Keeping all these facts in to considerations, it is submitted that the expenditure figure of Rs. 1190/- per child per month can be safely taken as an ideal figure also for the purpose of payment of school Fee per child in unaided private schools by the Fee-paying parents.
The issue that required to be highlighted is that if the Government can run its school with an expenditure of Rs.1190/- per child per month, what is the justification for the unaided private schools to not to be able to run their schools with the same amount of expenditure. It is submitted that unaided private schools should not ask the Fee paying parents to pay school fee more than what is spent by the Government on its students studying in its own schools in a particular State. We are of a strong view that the demand of a fee amount from the Fee- paying students more than that spent by the Government on its own students is totally unjustified. However, if any unaided private school finds that the amount of Rs.1190/- is less than what is actually required from the fee paying students, then they should approach the government and satisfy the Government based upon the audit of their annual financial accounts, that the school is indeed incurring an expenditure more than the amount specified by the Government in its own schools annually and therefore, eligible to charge higher fee based upon the expenditure incurred.
It may be kept in mind that in view of the Judgment of Punjab and Haryana High Court in the matter of CWP 17752/2005 titled Navdeep Kaur Gill & others v/.s Government of Punjab it was held that the Fee structure should be based upon the expenditure on the minimum infrastructure required for the recognition of the institute. In case, the Educational Society wishes to provide extra facilities it may do so from its own resources. This way there will not be extra burden on the parents of the students. It is also pertinent to mention here that now-a- days most of the schools are getting in to a sort of rat race to make their Schools Air Conditioned and charging exorbitant Fee from the parents. In its report, the Raghvan committee has expressed their strong opinion against the making schools with Five Star Facilities. They have recommended that such five star culture will not create conducive atmosphere for the educational purpose and it will create divide among the section of the society.
Therefore it is stressed that the amount so decided by the government sufficient for the re-imbursement is also sufficient for the schools to charge from the Fee paying students.
 
Ashok Agarwal, Advocat
National President, All India Parents Assocation
M-09811101923
20 April 2012