State education directorate receives Rs 138 cr to placate schools agitating against RTE dues
The state government’s primary education directorate has received Rs.138 crore for the reimbursement of students admitted to schools under the Right to Education (RTE) Act.
According to officials of the directorate, once the money is provided to protesting schools, they will no longer be able to deny admissions under the RTE.
However, as per the data available with the schools, the money received by the directorate is lower than the actual amount necessary for reimbursements.
United under the Independent English School Association (IESA), several schools across Maharashtra are protesting against the non-payment of reimbursement for RTE admissions, which has been due since 2012.
Owing to this, in February, IESA along with 41 schools had filed a petition against this non-payment of dues, in the Aurangabad bench of the Bombay high court.
Followed by a positive decision by the court, many schools had begun to deny admissions to RTE students, citing reasons on non-payment of dues, distance from school, documents and fees. The amount now received by the directorate is set to put an end to this.
The education directorate has received the reimbursement of RTE admission fee of Rs 138 crore, in addition to Rs 302 crore that was already present for paying the reimbursements.
Sharad Gosavi, deputy director of education, primary, said, “The directorate is giving utmost priority to the issue and will clear all the deserved reimbursements at the earliest. Hopefully, in the next few weeks, this entire matter will be resolved.”
But, according to the president of IESA and Principal of Saraswati Bhuvan English School, Jagrutti Dharmadhikari, the amount is not enough. “According to our data which includes the costs incurred by over 800 schools across Maharashtra since 2012, the reimbursements amount to more than Rs 800 crore. The current amount is not even close to that. We had filed a petition against the non-payment of dues, and the second date of hearing is on April 4, 2108. We will respond to the matter of whether to admit RTE students after the judgement is passed by the court.”