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Common Curriculum | Use additional textbooks on consent of parents, DSEK tells private schools

'The schools were categorically told not to charge any donation (admission fees) or any other fees which are not notified by the fee fixation committee,' Mir said.
01:16 AM Apr 05, 2024 IST | Syed Rizwan Geelani
common curriculum   use additional textbooks on consent of parents  dsek tells private schools
Children on way to school. [Representational Image]

Srinagar, Apr 4:  Amid the debate over adoption of common curriculum in both government and private educational institutions, the Director School Education Kashmir has asked the private schools to prescribe additional books only on consent of parents.


The instructions were issued during a meeting convened by the Director School Education Kashmir on Thursday with representatives of around 51 JKBOSE and CBSE affiliated private schools. During the meeting, the issue of charging admission fees by private schools besides other complaints received from parents, were discussed at the directorate.


The meeting also discussed the recent directions issued for the private schools to adopt JKBOSE published textbooks for all classes.


"The representatives of JKBOSE schools were advised to completely adhere to the directions and adopt JKBOSE textbooks. They can also prescribe the additional textbooks only after getting proper consent from parents," Director School Education Kashmir Tasaduq Hussain Mir told Greater Kashmir. "If parents do not have any problem with the additional textbooks then why would the government intervene in it," he said.


Mir said the meeting was convened with private schools as the complaints were pouring in against these schools regarding various issues.


"So it was decided to call the school representatives to listen to their grievances besides resolving the issues faced by the parents," he said. He said social media remains flooded with complaints against private schools following which the meeting was called to discuss the core issues.


"The schools were categorically told not to charge any donation (admission fees) or any other fees which are not notified by the fee fixation committee," Mir said.


He said the schools were again conveyed that in case they violate the directions, their cases will be referred to CBI for probe. During the meeting, the private schools have raised their grievances regarding their pending files with the Fee Fixation and Regulation Committee (FFRC) on which the Director has assured that the matter will be discussed with the FFRC.

In the meeting, the director has stated that the contribution of private schools in imparting education to students is being acknowledged but any violation of government norms will be dealt with as per the law.

"The meeting also discussed the implementation of RTE Act under which the private schools have to keep 25% seats reserved for students of EWS. The representatives informed us that the schools are already giving admission to EWS," one of the school representatives told Greater Kashmir. Notably, as per the RTE Act, the government has to reimburse the money towards the private schools against the admissions provided to students belonging to EWS.

The meeting has also decided that a member of the private school associations at district level will be part of the committee constituted by the directorate to verify the complaints received against the private schools.

The decision has been taken at a time when the FFRC has ordered the a school in Srinagar to reimburse the admission fees to the parents charged at the time of admissions this year.

The issue came to limelight after a parent posted on social media that her kid was denied admission by Kashmir Harvard Educational Institute (KHEI) due to non-payment of Rs 85000 admission fees.Both the parties were called by the FFRC wherein it was established that the school had demanded the admission fees and was directed to reimburse the same to all the parents within one month.

"The school management acknowledged that there was a misunderstanding and confusion. However, they did not specifically deny that no Admission Fee was demanded from the parent," reads an order issued by Chairman FFRC.

"It is very clear that the admission of the complainants' daughter was withheld on account of non- payment of Rs 85,000, which is the admission fee. Be that as it may, It was made clear to the school authorities that admission fee collected from all the fresh students shall be refunded by the school management," the order reads.The school management has been directed to submit a compliance report in this behalf within a period of one month, it reads.