Fees in private schools to vary with their locations

A committee formed recently to look into the revision of fees charged in private unaided institutions has recommended charging different fees in different schools, depending on the area where they are located.

A draft of the recommendations has been put up on the website of the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) for suggestions from the public and other stakeholders before it is finalised. Any member of the public who wants to give his or her own recommendations has to do so within 30 days. 

Within the Bangalore, Mysore and Hubli-Dharwad corporation limits, for example, the fees recommended are Rs 11,500 per year in LKG and UKG and Rs 6,800 per year at the primary level (class 1 to class 5). For higher primary (class 7-class 8), it is Rs 6,400 per year and for high school (class 9 and class 10) students, it is Rs 13,130 per year.

In the district headquarters, the fees are Rs 4,900 at the primary level, Rs 4,600 at the higher primary level and Rs 6,000 per annum at the high school level. For schools in the taluk level, the fees to be charged are Rs 3,000 (primary), Rs 2.800 (higher primary) and Rs 5,200 (high school) per year for each child. At the rural panchayat level, it is Rs 2,000 (primary), Rs 1,800 (higher primary) and Rs 4,160 (high school) per annum per child.

Staff salary

Even the salaries of school staff like teachers, lab assistants, clerks and D-category workers in schools have been fixed. In case schools want to collect more fees, they need to seek the concurrence of parents.

In addition to revising fees, the draft recommendations have asked all those running pre-primary schools and nursery schools to register with the department under the Karnataka State Education Act, 1983, so that fees can be fixed for them. Schools have also been asked to maintain service registers, besides providing provident fund and Employees’ State Insurance Scheme, emergency leave, medical leave and other facilities for their employees.

HC direction

Based on petitions filed by a few school managements for increasing the fees, the High Court had directed the DPI to form a fee fixation committee on March 13, 2014. The committee consisted of 14 members (retired officials).Later, a sub-committee of five members was formed to assist it in the revision of fees.

D Shashi Kumar, organising secretary, Karnataka State Private School Managements Association, said: “The recommendations in the draft have been made by retired officials who do not know the working of schools and these are highly questionable and illogical.”

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