After the Punjab government fixed a fee pattern for private unaided schools, the parents in Gurgaon have decided to come together and plan a strategy to put pressure on the Haryana government to act along similar lines against schools that have made unjustified fee hikes.
Different associations of parents have decided to meet on Sunday at Leisure Valley park to discuss the rules and regulations of the Education Act.
No school in Punjab would be able to increase the fee by more than 8% annually and all other funds charged by the schools would also be regulated by the provisions.
In Gurgaon, the schools have hiked their fee by two-and-a-half-times this year and despite an explanation from the schools and the promise of a rollback, nothing has been done so far.
“In Gujarat, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and now Punjab, the governments are acknowledging the pain and anger and helplessness that parents are going through. The parents of these states have protested and got their rights. Why cannot the Haryana government and the authorities concerned see our pain?” said Tripti Singh, the administrator of the Facebook forum, Gurgaon School for Better Education.
Hundreds of parents from Gurgaon have protested several times, including once at Jantar Mantar, against the “unreasonable” fee hike and “illegal” charges imposed by various prominent private schools.
“At least the Punjab government has taken a good decision, a step forward in the parents’ direction. The schools will be asked to give a proper justification for any kind of hike and as it is the right of a parent to know why and for what they are paying more. It is time our chief minister woke up and took action,” said Isha Vibhor, a parent and an entrepreneur.
Several parents’ associations in the city have served an ultimatum to the state government and given it a month’s time to get the fee hike rolled back, failing which they will further intensify the protests and burn effigies of the chief minister, education minister and other officials.
Rajan Kumar, senior executive of an MNC and a parent, said, “Our government must address this relentless pain parents are going through. If it does not act, we will have to leave Gurgaon for another city as education has become a business for schools here. Parents have to shell out hard earned money just to provide a basic education to children and this is unjustified. When Punjab can take action why can’t Haryana?”