Fresh protests over schools without 25% quota under RTE

Student organisations of various political parties gathered atthe State Education Directorate Office yesterday, to protest against the slow pace at which reservation of 25 per cent seats in schools for Economically Backward Class (EBC) students under the Right To Education Act (RTE) is being implemented, and other issues.

Too slow for comfort: Members of students’ organisations protest at the State Education Directorate building near Pune Station yesterday to demand quicker implementation of 25 per cent reservation in private schools under the Right To Education Act

Adding to the dissent is the fact that several unaided minority schools are not implementing the reservation. The protesters demanded that the concerned authority implement the reservation at the earliest to ensure students could reap the benefit of the scheme. Last year, the education department officials claimed that the scheme could not be implemented on time, as the direction came late from the state government. The department has said that the scheme could not be implemented in many private schools as a result of the delay.

Fearing a similar excuse or repeat this year as well, the protesters and other activists demanded that the education department officials take stringent action against those schools refusing to implement the 25 per cent quota for EBC students.

Youth activist Nilesh Borate said, “Despite an amendment being made in the RTE this year, many unaided minority schools in the city are refusing to implement the scheme and claim that its not applicable to them, as they come under minority category. The education department should take strict action against such schools.”

“Implementation started in August 2012, but very few schools have actually admitted poor students. If apathy from government continues, the situation will be repeated this year.”  

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