'Schools hiking fees to make up for RTE quota,' complain parents
Though the education department is taking all efforts to ensure maximum RTE admissions in private schools in the city through its ongoing online admission drive, many schools have illegally increased the fees of the remaining 75 per cent of the regular students to “‘accommodate’” them.
However education department is nothing but waiting for when any parent approached them with a complaint against any of these schools.
“I have heard complaints from parents about some private schools increasing their fees. If we receive written complaints against any institute, we can certainly act against them, by taking permission of the deputy directorate of education.
But till date, we have not received any formal complaints,” Shubhangi Chavan, deputy education head of PMC education board, said.
As per the rules, if any school wants to increase fees it has to seek the education department’s permission. But only by taking permission of teacher-parents group of the school they increase fees.
Many have even specifically cleared parents that as the school has to accommodate 25 percent RTE admissions, it has remained no option but to increase the fees.
Deputy director of education (Pune region), Suman Shinde, maintained same words. “If we received complaints against any schools we will certainly look in to it,” she said.
Deepti Kulkarni, parent of a boy enrolled in a reputable school in Sinhagad Road area who will be promoted to Std I in June, said, “Last year we paid total fees of Rs 27,000. This year the school has suddenly increased it to Rs 32 thousand.”
“The objectionable thing is not only that the school has increased 20 per cent fees but also asked parents to pay at least Rs 20,000 before April 20, even though the academic year starts in June,” she added.
It bears mentioning that while schools can’t charge fees from students enrolled under the RTE quota, the government reimburses the institutes as per the law.