Thursday, April 12, 2012

Right to Education Act - The apex court upheld the constitutional validity of the Act

New Delhi: With the Supreme Court throwing its full weight behind the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, on Thursday, the composition of students in schools as well as the economics of running schools will undergo dramatic changes.
The apex court upheld the constitutional validity of the Act and directed all schools, including privately-run schools, irrespective of the board they are affiliated to, to admit from this academic year (2012-13) at least 25% students from socially and economically backward families.
These students will be guaranteed free education from class I till they reach the age of 14.
This means the nature of the classroom will change. Until now, several schools were holding a separate shift for students from poor families after the main school was over.
Under the RTE Act, they will have to induct these students in the main class – in other words, 25% of every class will have students from socially and economically disadvantaged families.
While many educationists feel the resultant social integration will make education more meaningful, the reaction of some expensive schools as well as of some parents hasn’t been positive.
Also, the need to give free education to 25% students is expected to increase the expenditure of schools, which is likely to lead to another round of fee hikes.
The schools will get a subsidy from the government for giving free education (65% of the subsidy will come from the Centre and 35% from states), but the subsidy is not expected to meet the full cost.
The government subsidy will be based on the expenditure per student in government schools or Kendriya Vidyalayas, while many private schools spend (or at least, charge as fee) much more.

SC bars teachers from holding Pvt. tuitions

New Delhi: The Supreme Court’s Thursday judgement bringing all schools, except the unaided minority institutions, within the ambit of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act gave rise to an eventuality — teachers of all schools could be prohibited from giving private tutorials. 

The majority judgment by Chief Justice of India S HKapadia and Justice Swatanter Kumar upheld the constitutional validity of the RTE Act and said it would apply to all government, aided and private schools. Interestingly, Section 28 of the Act banned teachers in schools from teaching students through private tutorials. The bench said “to ensure that teachers should contribute in imparting quality education in the school itself.” 

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