Penalty against capitation fee to come under RTE Act

Currently, the draft rules uploaded by the Department of Public Instructions in the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan website do not include penal clauses for schools which violate the norm.

However, the planned changes of the RTE draft rules includes adding a penal clause, states Prabha Alexander, junior programme officer, who is in charge of receiving suggestions and objections from the public related to the act.

If the clause is introduced, schools could be penalised for charging exorbitant fees during admission or at any other time during the course of the year except tuition fee, as per the scale fixed by the government. Ever since the Bill was introduced, several school managements have opposed certain clauses. To make the act student friendly, the State Education department had invited views from parents, schools and educationalists about the RTE act.  The department has received close to 1,000 emails till now.

Objections

According to the officials, a majority of the objections  are related to no screening and reservation of 25 percent seats for students from weaker sections and disadvantaged groups The department will also set up a new committee which will go through the views sent by the public and will make revisions to the act.  As per the RTE act, schools can neither collect capitation fee nor use any screening procedure for admission.

The Section 8 of the proposed act states that 'schools should not collect any capitation fee or voluntary donation, while admitting a child to school. The decision might bring relief to parents who start looking for schools months ahead of the admission season.

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