Maharashtra school education department has asked schools in Mumbai to issue a passing certificate to students after completing Class 8. The certificate will be an important document showing that the child has successfully completed elementary education. It should be given within a month of completion.
Under the Right to Education Act, 2009, it is mandatory that every child who completes their education till Class 8 shall be awarded the certificate as per the education department’s format.
Although the education department had circulated a format for the certificate to all schools in 2010, it was found that most of the schools are still not issuing them.
“We had asked schools to start issuing the certificates years ago, but it is surprising that no one is following it,” said PR Pawar, deputy director, primary education. “We have now started telling them that if they do not follow it, we can take action as per RTE act.”
The certificate should state that the child has completed all courses of study, as per section 29 of the RTE act that lays down learning levels.
It can also mention achievements of the child that go beyond the curriculum such as music, dance, literature and others.
Some schools said that they were not aware of the rule. “We were not informed about the rule till recently, when deputy director attended our school science exhibition,” said Uday Nare, spokesperson of Shikshak Bharti teacher at Hansraj Morarji Public School, Andheri. “Parents are also unaware that they should ask for it.”
Others said they do not think it is important to issue the certificate if the child continues to study in the secondary section in the same school. “We have not yet started issuing these certificates as the children anyway continue studying in our school till Class 10,” said Sudha Nair, principal Vile Parle Mahila Sangh School. She said that they issue report cards and a leaving certificate if the child withdraws admission.
However, education authorities insisted that it is compulsory to issue the certificates.
“The certificate is an important document that will prove that the child had completed elementary education, just like the ones given after Class 10 and 12 board exams,” said BB Chavan, education inspector, South Zone.