More and more private schools in Uttarakhand capital are resorting to a unique business strategy — they are asking students to buy stationery with school logo and uniforms from particular shops.
Harried parents of schoolchildren have no option but to go the way the schools want and end up paying more for the same. Many parents blame the schools for having a money nexus with the shops.
Notebooks, bags, pencils with school monograms, is the name of the game in March when these schools close admissions and get set to begin studies in April. The parents have no option but to rush to the designated shops for a complete bookset.
Shekhar Mamgain, president Parents Association in capital said, “The schools are simply cutting our pockets. The booksellers have joined them too. This monogram stationery is provided at a very high price. However, it costs less in the open market. It shows booksellers are giving a cut to the schools. It has to stop.”
“The school asked us to buy books from a particular shop. But, the shopkeeper is saying that the set for LKG would be available on April 5. I have come all the way from Seema Dwar to get a bookset for my son. Now, I will have to return and come back again,” said Nitin, a parent who visited a bookstore at Dispensary Road.
Requesting anonymity, a bookseller said, “Only couple of bookstores on Dispensary Road have grabbed big schools of the capital.
One can easily make out why schools are prescribing fixed shops. It’s because they are getting heavy revenue from booksellers.
Besides, booksellers are forcing stationery like bags, colour pencil box, brown cover, and cellophane sheet on students. Interestingly, students are even forced to buy items like dictionary every year stating it’s the new edition. This needs to be checked.”
Apparently, public schools like St. Joseph’s Academy and Convent of Jesus and Mary couldn’t be contacted for version as principals were unavailable. DS Mann, chairman Doon International School, said the books were made available to students at the school. In fact, students were asked to buy books fancy stationery with school’s monogram and name in his school too. “To facilitate parents, we have provided an arrangement at the school itself. We too have prescribed stationery with the school monogram and name on it. Such stationery only includes the printing cost.
If parents demand, we provide them the list of books as well,” he said.