Reminder call to schools for answers

Reported by CORRESPONDENT, The Telegraph, June 24 , 2008

Ranchi, June 23: In an apparent bid to tighten the noose around private schools affiliated to CBSE and ICSE, district education officer Ashok Kumar Sharma has issued directives to principals that may curtail the autonomy enjoyed by them.

In a “last reminder”, the district education officer has directed the management of private schools to send “required information” and follow “government guidelines” within a week. Failing this, schools should be prepared for serious “action”.

He has also threatened to recommend cancellations of CBSE/ICSE affiliations if schools failed to abide by the rules and follow the directives.
Among things demanded are inclusion of the district education officer or regional deputy director of education in the admission process, head-wise information on all types of fee charged from students, on reservation of 10 per cent seats for Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe and attitude towards those below poverty line (BPL) and fee charged from them.

The directive also calls for prior permission from government departments before hiking fee and submitting yearly audited income and expenditure accounts.

The district education officer also asked for information under the Right To Information Act in January 2007 itself.

This included steps taken to prevent over-loading in school buses, compelling students to purchase books within school premises or designated bookshops, inclusion of books published by private publishers in the list of prescribed books and on following the directives issued by the Jharkhand Educational Tribunal (JET).

The letter issued by Ashok Kumar Sharma, district education officer, also demands a detailed report on providing free education to BPL category students.

The district education office expressed its resentment in the failure of following government directives by private schools.
Sharma said directives have been issued keeping in mind state government rules and if this time schools fail to furnish the information and abide by the rules they would write back to the HRD department for necessary action.

Schools have also been asked to provide information about the exact number of students, fee and admission procedure before the start of an academic session.

The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Jharkhand | Reminder call to schools for answers