Schools 'mislead' parents on admissions under RTE

Some schools in the City have reportedly been giving misleading information to parents with regard to the rules and procedures for admission under the Right To Education (RTE) Act, to dissuade them from applying for seats under the 25 per cent quota. 

Issuing application forms for admissions under the RTE quota began on Tuesday. Gunasheelan wants to get his five-and-a-half-year-old daughter admitted to first standard in a prominent school in Banaswadi. When he went to enquire about the admission, he was told that fee structure under the RTE quota would be different. “The school claimed that the fees would be Rs 53,000. Although the government would reimburse around Rs 11,000, we would have to pay the balance amount,” said Gunasheelan.

The school reportedly told him that since the government had not reimbursed the fees of the previous years, they had no choice. The government released fee dues of Rs 45.60 crore to the schools, following a standoff between the government and the school managements on the issue.    

In another instance, Umesh and Shariff had just got their application forms from the BEO office at Shivajinagar and were busy checking out the possible schools for their two children. “We came to the BEO office to collect the forms as they have the seals. Had we got them from the schools, they would have again asked us to go to the BEO office for the seals while submitting the forms,” said Shariff. 

However, according to the rules, forms can be submitted to the schools along with other documents without any seal from the BEOs. “We have received a few such complaints about schools misleading parents in order to dissuade them from applying,” said an official at the BEO office.  

Another parent, Dagakaral who wants to get his daughter admitted to class one, said he had a bitter experience last year when he was trying to get his eldest daughter admitted under the provisions of the RTE Act. “They knew that we were RTE candidates, still they insisted that we pay a donation,” said Dagakaral. 

A few parents at the BEO office in Shivajinagar were finding it difficult to get a hold of the procedures of the RTE as the information on display was in Kannada. Jaffer, a parent who wants to get his daughter admitted under the provisions of the Act, said: “There should be information in English too for a few cases like us,” he said. 

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