No capitation fees to be taken from students. No income should be earned with any profit motive, and any surplus should not be more than six per cent of income. All decisions on fee increase must first be cleared with the Parent Teachers Association.
These are some of the parameters in the state school education department’s final draft of its policy on school fee structures, which was finalised on May 21. They are now waiting for a public nod before finalising it.
“We’ve spent an entire year drafting a policy for school fee structures. Now we want to be very sure, so we’re inviting final objections and suggestions for 21 days before we issue the final Government Resolution,” said state school education minister Balasaheb Thorat.
After numerous parents complained about schools charging exorbitant fees, a committee was formed under former IAS officer Dr Kumud Bansal, to make recommendations on a fee structure. The state, after getting recommendations from a range of stakeholders, finalised a draft policy.
Now, the department has asked those stakeholders, including parents and school representatives, to give their final feedback on a list of parameters by June 11.
In the policy for which views are invited, the state has defined 19 categories of expenses, which will be calculated and divided over 12 months and the number of students, to arrive at the monthly, quarterly, half-yearly and yearly fees.
These categories include teachers’ salaries, first-aid, science lab expenses, stationery costs, electricity and water costs, building repair, furniture and library expenses, school annual day programmes, and scholarship costs among other things.
For larger projects that the school might want to carry out for the betterment of students and to improve the quality of its education — such as setting up computer labs, or creating sports facilities, the school should account for it for a maximum of five years of the project while passing on such costs to students.
The policy also insists that schools indicate the amount that they earn from events such as marriages that they host on their premises, or any rent they may earn from such events.