The UT education department has decided to shut down unrecognised schools operating in city over the next few months. Confirming the same, the education secretary said only once the kids studying in these schools were shifted to the government schools in surrounding areas, such schools will be closed.
The development comes in the wake of the committee formed by the education department, comprising four members as well as principals of the government schools located in these areas, was directed to look into the agenda that mandated the committee to file a report after the issue had come up in November 2015.
The committee was formed after HT had highlighted the plight of students studying in over 80 unrecognised schools in UT. Issues like unsafe infrastructure, lack of qualified teachers, lack of affiliation certificate are some of the major concerns at these schools, which impacts the academic qualification of students enrolled here.
According to sources, the report was forwarded to the UT adviser to look into the same and it is with the consent of the senior most administration officials, that a decision to shut these schools is taken, but only once the kids are sent to local government schools.
Education secretary, Sarvjit Singh, said, “Keeping in mind the sensitivity of the issue and the fact that these institutes have been in place for almost 20 years, the transition of these students from the unrecognised schools to government schools has to be smooth.” However, the decision had been taken with consent of the UT officials at the highest level, in order to ensure that the kids education does not suffer.
Giving more details, director, school education, Rubinderjit Singh Brar, said the same committee who had earlier prepared a report on the number of kids studying in these schools and the number of government schools located in this area and their capacity would now work out how many kids from which unrecognised school can be adjusted in which government school to kick-start the process. The orders, in this regard, will be issued by Friday.
Furthermore, the department officials will also be issuing a public notice to parents of students enrolled in these schools to make them aware about the purpose behind the transition.
“The process would be completed in March so that kids can be shifted to the surrounding government schools, before the next session begins,” added Brar.
The committee members earlier included: Saroj Mittal, deputy director vocational education; Suman Shar ma, deputy director adult education; Prem Joshi, deputy district education officer and circle auditor (private schools) Raghu, who had prepared a report on the basis of student-staff ratio in these schools, locality, whether teachers training in the schools are trained or not, state of infrastructure and also the strength of the government schools in the surrounding areas to see if students studying in the unrecognised schools can be shifted here or not.
The same committee will now be looking into the exact transition process to note students from which unrecognised institutes could be shifted to which government school.
WHAT’S THE SCHOOL’S STATUS
A total of 22 schools had applied for recognition, of which two schools withdrew the request. Five others including Bhavan Vidyalaya, Sector 33; Tender Heart School, Sector 33; Adarsh Public School, Sector 20; and DAV Public School, Sector 39 were given recognition while others are under process of being granted the same.
The schools who were denied recognition include : Shaheen Public School, Maloya; Saint Hari Public School, Dehra Sahib, Manimajra; Manimajra Model School, Manimajra; Adarsh Vidya Mandir School, Manimajra; Paradise Public School, Manimajra; Alpha Public School, Manimajra; Goodwill Public School, Manimajra. These seven schools were issued notice under Section 15.6 of RTE Rules 2010, according to which the schools that do not conform to the norms, standards and conditions mentioned in sub-rule (1) within three years from the commencement of the Act, shall cease to function.
Under Section 18.5 of The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, “any person who establishes or runs a school without obtaining certificate of recognition, or continues to run a school after withdrawal of recognition, shall be liable to fine that may extend to ` 1 lakh and in case of continuing contravention, to a fine of Rs 10,000 for each day.”