Indore: A group of 80 parents in Vijay Nagar approached BJP MLA Ramesh Mendola and then as per directives met Indore collector Manish Singh to discuss the school fee issue on Saturday. Parents urged Mendola and collector to decide an amount for school fees for conducting online classes.
The group of parents shared proof of various private schools charging complete school fee stating that they provide meals for free anyway, hence, the entire school fee is charged under tuition fee head.
Parents were headed by representatives of Jago Palak Jago group heading the campaign to charge appropriate fee for online classes and #NoSchoolNoFee for lockdown period. The representatives were Ramakant Sharma, Sachin Maheshwari, Satish Sharma and Chanchal Gupta.
“As you know, since the last week of March, the country has been undergoing a worldwide pandemic of ‘corona’ due to which the entire country has faced an unexpected and emergency nationwide lock down during which economic activities completely came to a standstill and even at present, life has not come back to normal,” Sharma said.
Further, he quoted economic and livelihood crisis faced by a large section of the country. “Many people have either lost their jobs or their income has been slashed down to half,” Sharma said.
Further, he added that during this period, all private and government educational institutions are also completely closed and the situation is not clear about re-opening as of now.
“Our children have been studying in the same school for last 15 years, and parents have been paying all the fees as demanded by school, but in current economic crisis, it is not feasible to pay for lockdown period when school did not even function,” Sharma said.
Further, he said that as such, it is expected from competent individuals and competent institutions that they should come forward in the social interest and take decisions in the larger public interest for the time being, not expecting private interests and benefits.
Citing responsibility of school, parents demanded that school should not collect fees from the school for the duration of the school closure and do not pressurize students to study online.
“Because online education also has many contradictions, asymmetries and health problems,” Sharma said. However, since online classes will be the new norm for quite some time, a reasonable fee should be charged for the same, parents urged.
“Since High Court (HC) ordered schools to collect only tuition fee, many schools are charging all the fee under tuition fee head and hence, not providing any relief as such,” Gupta said. He added that some schools are even charging annual fee citing the stay order on government directions.
Collector seeks summary & fee structures
After listening to various issues raised by parents about hiked tuition fee charges and setting a limit on fee collection for online classes, Indore collector Manish Singh asked parents to provide a summary of all the issues. Further, parents are required to provide fee details of previous years and current year to justify their claim on schools charging hiked tuition charges.
Further, Singh assured them of investigation and revising school fee if needed in near future.