No fees, no class is the policy at this Mumbai school

Parent approaches Child Rights Commission after his son is made to stand outside classroom over delay in fee payment

Saraswati Vidya Mandir School in Mahim. Pic/Suresh Karkera
Saraswati Vidya Mandir School in Mahim. Pic/Suresh Karkera

After his son was made to stand outside class over delay in fee payment, Matunga resident Nitin Waghmare has moved the Child Rights Commission and the police against the “inhuman and embarrassing treatment” of his child.

The school management, however, said the stringent action was required to ensure that parents pay fees on time.

On Monday, the Std I student of Saraswati Vidya Mandir School in Mahim reached at 8 am but was sent out.

Parental fury
“I received a call from the school around 1 pm that I should pick my son up as he is anyway not allowed to attend class over non-payment of fees. I reached and spoke to the teacher, who said she was just following orders. When I spoke to principal, I was told that I should not send my son to school till I pay the full fees,” said Waghmare.

“Just last week, when my son rejoined after his appendix surgery, I had submitted a note to the authorities personally to take care of him during school hours. This is inhuman and embarrassing.

“Why should a child be subjected to this embarrassment when the fee payment matter is between a parent and the school? They could have made an entry in the school diary or sent a remark home with my son or sent a notice to me to meet the principal.”

According to Waghmare, his is not the only case, as there were other parents too in the lobby where children were made to wait. “I have paid the first-term fee. The last date for the second-term fee payment was November 25. I was a few days late because I was caught up with my son’s treatment. We have been associated with this school for over four years; we have always paid the fees. How can the school say that we are delaying on purpose?”

Authority speak
Anil Pai Kakode, a member of the trust that runs the school, said, “It is an unaided school. If parents don’t pay fees, how do we pay salaries to our teachers? All parents are given sufficient time and reminders to pay fees. Nearly 95% have paid; if a few want to create an issue, what can we do?”

“The school can send written notes with children for the parents to pay fees, or call parents to school. Such treatment is not right,” said deputy director of education BB Chavan.

Secretary of the Child Rights Commission AN Tripathi said, “We will look into the details of the complaint.”

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