Parents seek government intervention for uniformity in school fees
Many schools have introduced various ways to reduce the burden, but parents want the government to take a stand in their favour
The financial crisis caused due to the COVID-19 pandemic has led to school fees becoming a major point of discussion. While many schools have introduced novel concepts to ease the burden, parents are also discussing ways with managements to avoid issues with salary to staff.
Despite the constant demand by parents to cancel fees or give concessions, this is not possible for all schools. Principal of Smt. Sulochanadevi Singhania School in Thane, Revathy Srinivasan said, "Schools cannot do away with fees, after all, salaries need to be paid to staff."
Some relax norms
Many schools have their own model of relaxation in fees. Meera Isaacs, principal of Cathedral and John Connon School, said, "If some parents are facing genuine issues, we consider them. We have also waived off fine on late payment of fees."
Similarly, at the Sri Sri Ravishankar Vidya Mandir, the late fee is waived. Despite a PTA-approved hike in fees to be implemented this year, the school has decided to continue with the old fee structure for three months. Principal Rekha Kapoor, said, "This decision was taken due to the current situation."
Jamnabai Narsee School has not spoken anything about fees as yet. "Generally parents pay fees in the month of April. But we have not collected fees as we are yet to take a decision. We are not going to push for them so fast," said principal Zeenat Bhojabhoy.
Bombay Scottish, Mahim has deferred the increase in fees for the forthcoming year. Dhirubhai Ambani International School has decided to waive off transport and canteen fees. At Pawar Public School, one month extension was provided to parents to pay the first instalment.
'Govt must intervene'
Former education minister Ashish Shelar has written a letter to Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad, asking her to issue an order to schools to rollback fee hikes. But parents feel that the issue should not be politicised.
President of Parents of Private Schools of Maharashtra (POPSOM), Milind Gangurde said, "Many parents are dependent on jobs. Some are facing huge salary cuts or loss of jobs due to the situation. It is time the government intervenes and takes a strong stand in favour of parents."
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