Parents, teachers hold protest marches in Thane
Parents and teachers in Thane gathered together and staged two different protests at Wagle Estate, on Tuesday, objecting to the quality of education available for their children.
At 11am, around 1,000 people gathered at Wagle Estate and took a march to the district collector’s office, protesting against the Maharashtra government’s decision to scrap private, integrated coaching classes. The march, organised by Coaching Classes Sanchalak Sanghatna, included students, teachers and owners of coaching classes.
As a form of protest, the Sanghatna also held classes outside the Thane District Collectorate.
“Coaching classes cannot be considered only as business, it is also the livelihood of many people. There are many classes that teach children from underprivileged backgrounds at reduced fees, and such classes will also have to be shut,” said Thane MLA Jitendra Awhad. “Almost 50,000 people will be unemployed across the state because of the government’s decision.”
This was followed by another protest at 3pm, this time by parents who objected to the lackadaisical attitude of teachers at Thane Municipal Corporation’s school number 3. This march began at Lokmanya bus station and ended at the Thane Municipal Corporation’s (TMC) ward office.
The TMC’s education department is already under the scanner for collecting fees from its English-medium school. These schools don’t distribute school bags, uniforms or serve mid-day meals, unlike other civic schools, issues that have been raised in the past. Now, parents are complaining about the lackadaisical attitude of teachers in one of these schools. “Students complain about teachers being on their mobile phones constantly and that no attention is being paid to the class," said one of the parents, requesting anonymity. “There are hardly any students in the class, despite which the teachers are not managing the class well,” said another parent of a Class 3 student.
The protest march ended midway after Manish Joshi, deputy municipal commissioner, education, TMC, requested the parents to stop and promised necessary action.