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Std VIII pass-outs to get free and compulsory education certificates

Starting this year, all schools in the state will have to issue certificates to all those who have passed Std VIII, stating that they have received compulsory and free education under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2010. A circular was dispatched by the Maharashtra State Council of Educational Research and Training (MSCERT), Pune, on April 26, informing the city schools about the same.¬†Though the Act — that promises free and compulsory education to children within the age group of 6 to14 — was introduced in 2010, it is only now that the state has started implementing several rules falling under its ambit.

Officialspeak
“From this year onwards, primary schools will have to issue certificates to all those students who pass Std VIII. This certificate must be given along with their results. It is mandatory for all city schools to follow this rule as it falls under the RTE Act, which has been introduced by the centre. However, I cannot comment on the rule’s implementation in schools following boards other than SSC,” said Mirza Baig, BMC education officer, who is in-charge of primary sections of schools.

Principals speak
Sabina Zaveri, principal of Anjuman-I-Islam High School at Fort and convenor of South Mumbai schools from south ward, said, “Issuing these certificates will ensure that principals will be accountable for the education of those particular students (passing Std VIII). This may also help the government keep some records of students completing their primary schooling. However, our students will get these certificates once the school reopens in the month of June, as the circular has reached us very late.”

Francis Swamy, principal of Holy Family High School in Andheri, said, “Currently, teachers are undergoing their annual training. Here, they are being informed about this new rule, which falls under the RTE Act.”Fr Michael Pinto, principal of St John the Baptist High School in Thane, said, “These certificates won’t be of much help to the students. The entire exercise is being carried out only because it is compulsory.”

Did you know?
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act or Right to Education Act (RTE), which was passed by Parliament on August 4, 2009, describes the modalities of the provision of free and compulsory education for children between 6 and 14 in India under Article 21A of the Indian Constitution. India became one of 135 countries to make education a fundamental right of every child when the Act came into force on April 1, 2010. 

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