A parent of a student at St Elias’ High School in Khar on Tuesday filed a police complaint against the school alleging the school was charging capitation fees.
Sandeep Jadhav, whose two children study in the primary section, alleged that the school was illegally collecting fees under various heads — activity fees, grat fund, S fund and miscellaneous fees.
The school collected Rs1,550 under various heads.
Jadhav further alleged that school had asked parents to pay donations. “At the time of admission, the school also charged parents ‘donations’, which is also not allowed,” he alleged.
The Maharashtra Educational Institutions (Prohibition of Capitation Fee) Act, 1987, allows collection of tuition fee, term fee, admission fee and other heads sanctioned by the government. “How can the school charge fees that are not allowed under the Act?” asked Jadhav.
Refuting the allegations, school manager Father R Fernandes said, “We are not charging any illegal fees.”
Parents are also up in arms about the school’s decision to hike its monthly fees halfway through the year, from Rs450 per month to Rs800 per month.
“We are all poor parents, we cannot afford such high fees,” said Meenakshi Jadhav, parent of a Class 3 student.
“When we requested the school to reduce the fees, they just told us that if we cannot afford it then we should withdraw our children from the school.”
“The ball is now in the education department’s court,” said Jayant Jain, president of the Forum for Fairness in Education that helped Jadhav file the FIR. “If they find that what the school is doing is illegal then the police can take further action.”
“We have registered the case but not arrested anyone,” said P Thete, assistant police inspector, Khar police station.
In the past, the organisation has filed FIRs against Swami Vivekanand School in Gorai, MP Shah School in Vile Parle and St Xavier’s School in Andheri for allegedly collecting capitation fees.
School managements of all three schools had gone to court, challenging the FIR.
The matter is still in court.