Madhya Pradesh Board Books Costlier Than NCERT

Madhya Pradesh Board Books Costlier Than NCERT

Parents forced to buy books from designated shops

Rishita TomarUpdated: Thursday, March 14, 2024, 09:56 AM IST
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Madhya Pradesh Board Books Costlier Than NCERT |

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Even as a few local private schools affiliated to Madhya Pradesh Board of Secondary Education (MPBSE) are forcing parents to buy books from particular shops for academic calendar 2024 -25, parents say that school text books prescribed by MPBSE are costlier than those recommended by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT). The new academic session will start in schools soon after the examinations get over.

On Tuesday, district administration had issued orders that schools cannot force parents to buy books from specific shops. They should be free to buy books for their children from any vendor they like, district collector Kaushlendra Vikram Singh had said. Every year, the department issues an order to end the monopoly of private school operators, book publishers and sellers. But not much changes. Neha Taram, whose daughter is in 6th grade, said, “Every year, the school provides a list and instructs us to purchase books and notebooks from a specific shop.

This year, they offered a complete kit through the school itself, costing over Rs 10,000.” Sunita Wadiwa, whose daughter is in Class 8, said, “This isn’t the first time authorities have issued such orders. The prices of books are soaring even for junior classes. Additionally, when the school designates specific shops for books’ purchase, children insist on buying from those shops.”  Here are a few examples of pricing disparity between MP Board and NCERT books. For instance, Vardhman Publisher’s Hindi book for 6th grade, comprising 105 pages, is priced at Rs 345, while English book spanning 121 pages, costs Rs 375.

In contrast, NCERT Class 6 Vasant (Bhag 1) Hindi book covering 146 pages is available for Rs 65. Similarly, NCERT English textbook, Honeysuckle, with 52 pages, is priced at Rs 52. To curb rising price of books, the state government implemented Madhya Pradesh Private School (Fee and Related Matters Regulation) Act, 2017 and Rules 2020. Despite yearly directives from the department, compliance remains low, with only a fraction of schools adhering to the directives. This year, only 12 schools in Bhopal district have given all the information regarding books, syllabuses and fees. All the private schools affiliated to MPBSE follow NCERT syllabus but do not prescribe books published by NCERT to students. Instead, they prescribe books of private publishers that contain NCERT text.  

Not all schools follow order

School education department has asked schools to submit details of fees and books but only a few schools have complied with the order. A committee has been formed to look into compliance. Officials will conduct inspection of schools that are not following the directive.

- Bhopal District Education Officer Anjani Kumar Tripathi

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