Fee hike issue in CBSE schools is a sticky affair

Started by sajiv, Jul 25, 2009, 04:35 AM

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Fee hike issue in CBSE schools is a sticky affair

Bangalore: The proposed Bill by the State Government that seeks to control CBSE and ICSE schools in Karnataka has a tough road ahead, considering that the two are independent boards with their own set of by-laws, including those related to fee hike.

Even though sharp rise in fees has been an issue raised by parents across the country, there have been no instances of either of the school boards allowing States to control schools affiliated to them, leading to a system of dual control. Sources in the CBSE regional office in Chennai told The Hindu that the board believed in giving "full autonomy" to schools, with broad guidelines that bind them. Hence, the board does not prescribe any fee structure, but only says that the fees should be "commensurate with the facilities provided in the schools". It also says that they should submit audit reports and cannot divert their funds.

On the issue of fee hike, the board only said that any change could be done in consultation with parents, and change cannot be affected in the middle of an academic year.

"We cannot completely control the fee structure because we do not pay salaries to the teachers and only give affiliation," said the CBSE source. "The schools are expected to fend for themselves as far as payment of salaries and other facilities are concerned."
Dual authorities

Many principals of CBSE and ICSE schools feel that the Bill would lead to a situation where the schools would end up with two authorities to answer and any move to control them will be unwelcome. On the other hand, there have been complaints galore about fee hike in schools without holding the mandatory meeting with parents.

Parents complain about the absence of a mechanism for immediate redressal, with neither of the boards having regional offices in Karnataka.
Earlier report

The Karnataka State Education Perspective Plan Committee, headed by D. Jagannatha Rao, retired Director of Public Instruction, had in 2007 submitted a report with the following observation: "The Karnataka Education Act should contemplate introduction of suitable provision for the State Government's supervision of all private schools affiliated to ICSE/CBSE situated within the State as these schools have become a law unto themselves as the central boards have failed to control and supervise these schools."

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