Parents and activists from the Aap Parents Union, affiliated with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), staged a protest at the Education Commissioner's Office in Central Building Pune on Thursday. The protest aimed to address the plight of students who have completed class 8 under the Right to Education Act but are left with limited options for continuing their education.
As per Section 3 of the Right to Education Act, children aged 6 to 14 are entitled to free and compulsory education in their neighbourhood schools up to the completion of elementary education, which includes class 8. However, after completing class 8, these students face a challenging situation, as there are no provisions for their further education.
Fees unaffordable for parents earning less than one lakh annually: Mukund Kirdat
"Under the Right to Education Act, students admitted to private schools through the reserved 25 percent seats are now entering class 9 but are unable to continue due to the financial burden. While education up to class 8 is free for underprivileged children with parents earning less than one lakh annually, the fees in private schools for higher grades range from 40,000 to 90,000 rupees, which is unaffordable for many families," said Mukund Kirdat, representing the body.
The AAP Parents Union is demanding an immediate order to provide free education up to 9th and 10th standard in the same school. They assert that the government should take prompt action to address the educational needs of these children affected by the current system's limitations.