Ludhiana: Confusion reigns over government school fees
To pay or not to pay – parents of children studying in government schools of the district are confused with announcements of state government offering relaxations for school fees amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
With December 1 set as the deadline to deposit the registration and continuation fee for Classes 10 and 12, the school authorities are on their toes to collect the fees from parents.
School principals have stated that a large number of students have not deposited the fee, including amalgamated, sports and PTA charges, as their parents are under the false assumption that the state government has waived all charges.
However, during the recent three-day virtual parent-teacher meetings, teachers had informed the parents that only the funds deposited in the treasury with regards to tuition fee, absentee fine and school leaving certificate have been waived and not other charges.
There are 900 students in Classes 9 to 12 at Government Senior Secondary School, Dhandari Khurd, and majority of them have not submitted the school fee till November. In every parent-teacher meeting, the school authorities have been informing parents to deposit the fee, but to no avail.
Speaking over confusion among parents, district education officer, secondary, Swaranjit Kaur, said, “I am not aware of the issue. School principals must clarify to parents through virtual meetings that the funds deposited in the treasury have been waived by the government and not all charges.”
Principal Ujjalveer Singh, said, “There are over 570 students in Classes 10 and 12 and many have deposited the board registration fee but parents are not ready to deposit the school fee. The charges are minimal and parents have been asked to pay it on a monthly basis but despite repeated requests, they have not deposited it citing financial constraints.”
As per the rules, government schools can charge Rs 15 each as sports fund and parent-teacher association fund and Rs 20 as amalgamated fund monthly from students of Classes 9 and 10. While from Classes 11 and 12, the school authorities can charge Rs 20 each for sports fund and parent-teacher association fund, Rs 25 as an amalgamated fund.
The board registration and continuation fee for Class 10 are Rs 900 and Rs 1,170 for Class 12.
Schools hold meet to ask parents to deposit fee
A chemistry lecturer of a government school, said, “For the last three days, we are holding parent-teacher meetings to inform parents regarding the performance of their child. During the meetings, we have also asked them to deposit the school fee but the majority of them believe that the state government has waived all the charges. To address the issue, the education department must issue a statement as these funds are used to maintain the school infrastructure and pay water and electricity bills.”
At Government Senior Secondary School, Multipurpose, which has a strength of 3,300 students in Classes 9 to 12, over 50% of students have not deposited the fee.
The teachers are contacting the parents daily and asking them to deposit the board class registration fee as the last date is approaching and if not submitted in the given time then they will have to pay the late fee charges as well.
School principal Navdeep Romana, said, “All class teachers are directed to collect the registration fee from students. The last date to deposit the fee is nearing and if a student has to appear for the board exams, we have informed parents to deposit the fee.”
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