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Pvt schools may raise fees before govt acts

mumbai Updated: Jan 08, 2010 01:52 IST
Bhavya Dore
Bhavya Dore
Hindustan Times
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Private, unaided schools across Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai may announce fee hikes for the next academic year before February 10.

The Unaided Schools’ Forum, which has 95 educational institutions as members, on Thursday advised them to announce fee hikes before the state government makes a move to regulate fees in unaided schools.

The Bombay High Court has asked the government to decide on the issue by February 10.

“If a circular is issued declaring a fee hike before a government decision, new rules cannot be applied retrospectively,” said S.C. Kedia, joint secretary of the Forum.

The Forum’s members include institutions like Podar World School, GD Somani School, Arya Vidya Mandir, Jamnabai Narsee School, Avabai Petit, J.B Petit, Bombay International School and Ryan International, among others.

The government is yet to take a decision on the Kumud Bansal committee report, which recommends that schools be allowed to earn a 15 per cent surplus over expenses. Kedia wants a 25 per cent surplus.

At a meeting in Khar, Kedia said the Supreme Court had upheld the autonomy of private educational institutions. “If the government decision is not in our favour, we may go to court,” he said. “The state can’t regulate fees or interfere in the functioning of unaided schools.”

Several schools have already raised the fees steeply this year. “My son’s school in Vile Parle doubled the fee to Rs 46,550,” said a parent. “A Panvel school has proposed a hike of up to 60 per cent,” said Jayant Jain, president of the Forum for Fairness in Education.