Coronavirus update: Gurugram schools cannot ask for fees until normal classes resume

Updated on Mar 29, 2020 03:58 AM IST

In a letter shared with district education officers across the state on Friday, the education department wrote that no fee needs to be paid by parents until the Covid-19 situation improves and schools resume their normal schedule.

Coronavirus update: Fee can be sought only after schools reopen for normal classes, the school education department said.(Yogendra Kumar/HT File Photo)
Coronavirus update: Fee can be sought only after schools reopen for normal classes, the school education department said.(Yogendra Kumar/HT File Photo)
Hindustan Times, Gurugram | BySadia Akhtar, Gurugram

The school education department has directed all district education officers to ensure that schools do not ask parents to pay fees until schools reopen for normal classes. The department said that it had received complaints from parents about schools that were pressuring them to pay the fee immediately.

In a letter shared with district education officers across the state on Friday, the education department wrote that no fee needs to be paid by parents until the Covid-19 situation improves and schools resume their normal schedule. “It has come to our notice that some schools are pressurising parents to pay the fee immediately. In light of the countrywide lockdown, this is not appropriate. Private schools affiliated to CBSE/ICSE/HBSE or any other board cannot charge fee for anything with immediate effect. Fee can be sought only after schools reopen for normal classes (sic),” stated the letter.

Rashmi Malik, principal, Salwan Public School, Sector 15, said that the bill for the current quarter was under consideration with the school trust and the school would abide by the government’s directions. “If the government is asking us to wait, we’ll do so. We will go by the government directions. A fee hike was approved by the management committee meeting in early March but the bill for the same had not been raised,” said Malik.

Heritage Xperiential Learning School has deferred the annual fee increase for the first quarter. The school will be raising fee bills as per the fee structure of the academic year 2019-20 for the first quarter of the new session.

Tripti Singh, whose children go to two different private schools, said that one of the schools had said that it wouldn’t charge transport and meal fees for a month and revise the second quarter fees with arrears. Singh said that parents were anxious about fee payment since several businesses were going through losses. “Parents are receiving invoices and there is no clarity over schools reopening. The government might have asked schools not to charge but some of them are doing that without holding online classes,” said Singh.

Kunal Bhadoo, director of Kunskapsskolan Schools, said that the school had rolled back the transport and cafeteria fee and asked parents to pay for the first quarter on old rates prior to the notification. The notification had created uncertainty among schools, said Bhadoo. “As a school, we are sticking to our routine schedules and conducting full-fledged online classes. Teachers are working as usual. We were hoping to generate funds and pay our teachers with the first quarter fee but with the Haryana government’s diktat, we are concerned and uncertainty prevails over how schools would function,” he added.

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