After last month’s agitation against fee hikes in schools, parents from over 25 schools in Mumbai are set to stage another protest on May 21 against institutions that increased its fees exorbitantly for the new academic session 2017-18. They plan to move the Bombay high court against parents teachers associations (PTA) of schools that approved illegal fee hikes proposed by the school managements.
The parents said that they decided upon this course of action at a meeting held in Dadar on Monday after schools continued to hike their fees without their consent.
According to the Maharashtra Educational Institutions (Regulation of Fee) Act, 2011, private school managements must seek PTA executive panel’s approval for any fee hike six months before the start of the new academic year.
But activists complained that in many schools, PTA has approved fee hikes without consulting the fee Act.
“Many components of the increased fee structure are in violation of the fee regulation Act so we will send the PTA representatives a legal notice,” said Jayant Jain, president of NGO Forum for Fairness in Education. They are also planning to file a public interest litigation (PIL) in Bombay high court against schools selling books and uniforms even though it is prohibited by the government.
On April 20, the parents protested at Azad Maidan but it did not yield any results. “Our complaints to the education officials are falling on deaf ears, so we need to take legal action,” said Jain.
Another group of parents are set to meet education minister Vinod Tawde ton Tuesday to request the government to amend the school fee regulation Act. “There are certain aspects of the Act which are unclear and we would like the government to fix it,” said Anubha Sahai a member of Parents of Private School of Maharashtra (POPSOM) -- a parents’ organisation.