Mumbai's 218 private primary schools running without RTE approval: RTI report

Mumbai's 218 private primary schools running without RTE approval: RTI report

Nitin Dalvi, a member of the parent organisation, stated that if the balance sheets show financial irregularities at the school, such as illegal fees, donations, and rent, among other things, the school administration will be in trouble and the RTE approval will be revoked.

FPJ Education DeskUpdated: Thursday, March 16, 2023, 11:45 AM IST
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Schools are required to renew their RTE approval every three years, according to the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act. | Pixabay (Representative Image)

Mumbai: As many as 218 primary unaided private schools under the jurisdiction of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) education department are operating without Right to Education (RTE) approval, revealed a Right to Information Act (RTI) request.

These schools have reportedly failed to renew their recognition certificates which are mandated under the RTE Act.

Schools are required to renew their RTE approval every three years, according to the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act.

Failure to obtain the renewal means that schools may be fined Rs 10,000 per day until they meet the standards, as well as for operating the school without recognition. The management of these schools will also face a Rs 1 lakh fine.

Government inaction behind this lapse

Maharashtra Rajya Vidyarthi, Palak, Shikshak Mahasangh, a parent organisation that filed the RTI, claims that the government's inaction has provided an easy escape for many private schools.

Every year, after receiving RTE approval, the school administration is required to submit the balance sheet to the government and parents.

Schools fear transparency

Nitin Dalvi, a member of the parent organisation, stated that if the balance sheets show financial irregularities at the school, such as illegal fees, donations, and rent, among other things, the school administration will be in trouble and the RTE approval will be revoked.

Apart from evading audits, Dalvi claimed that private unaided schools intentionally do not renew RTE approval. "Otherwise, they will be required to participate in RTE admissions, which entails reserving 25% of their seats for children from disadvantaged backgrounds and providing them with free education, among other benefits," he added.

Several well known schools around the city have made it to this list of 'illegally' running school, states a midday report.

Anandilal Podar High School (Santacruz), Raje Shivaji primary school (Dadar), St Michael’s high school (Mahim), St Andrew’s high school primary section (Bandra). St Aloysius primary school (Santacruz), The Alexandra Girls High School (Fort), Gloria convent (Byculla), St Pius X high school (Nahur), Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan Vidyalaya (Borivli), Rustomjee Troopers (Dahisar) and VPM’s Vidya Mandir primary school (Dahisar) being a few of such schools.

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