Govt, private schools engage in textbook tussle

Private institutions seek free supply; minister finds political reason

While the Primary and Secondary Education Department is insisting that private unaided schools should pay for the text books, the schools are demanding that they should be provided free of cost. The students are likely to suffer as a result of the tiff between the two.

Primary and Secondary Education Minister Vishveshwara Hegde Kageri told reporters that the Department has asked private unaided schools to submit the demand drafts to get text books.

“Many schools have paid up, but nearly 25 per cent of them, especially those with the KUSMA, (Karnataka Unaided Schools Management Association) are unnecessarily creating problem,” he said.

Managements responsible

The schools had been informed about the payment in January itself. The managements should own the responsibility for inconvenience to students as the schools will be re-opening on May 28.

Kageri also cited “political reason” for these schools to take up a fight with the Government, but he did not elaborate on it. However, the Department has kept the text books ready to be distributed for students in the Government schools free of cost.

The department has brought out new laminated text books with colour pictures for the first time this year. The focus in the new academic year is clarity in reading and writing, he said, adding that it has been planned to make the text books available in the open market from next year for the benefit of students.

Deadline extended

Kageri said the last date for revaluation of the answer sheets of the second PU examinations has been extended from May 22 to May 26 as there are lot of applications this year.

Besides, over 42,000 applications have been received for photo copies of the answer sheets. So far, nearly 32,000 applications have been processed and the rest will be done in two days’ time, he added. The Department has decided to start an one year certificate course in Yakshagana from this academic year.

The course will be in junior, senior and vidwat levels and there is no qualification or age restriction for taking up the course. Private institutions will be allowed to conduct the course, and the SSLC Board will conduct the annual examinations, the Minister said.

The Government has sought the permission of the Election Commission of India for completing the process of appointing 6,500 primary and high school teachers in the State. The model code of conduct will be coming into effect due to the coming Rajya Sabha and Legislative Council elections. If the ECI permits, the process will be completed, he added.

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