New Delhi: Regulation of private school fee structure and mandatory enrolment of the children of public servants in government-funded institutions were among some of the demands raised by parents of students from 18 states at a conference here today.
“Laws should be enacted to regulate fees and other charges in private schools, besides bringing all minority schools in the country within the ambit of the Right to Education,” an All India Parents’ Association (AIPA) statement said.
The Delhi-based organisation also said the government should enact a national law on the lines of the Allahabad High Court judgement directing all public servants to send their children to government schools.
Ruing the “commercialisation of education”, AIPA member Indrani Banerjee said the quality of school education has kept declining post liberalisation and has now reached its nadir.
“We should have a new and better education policy to realise the dream of our former President APJ Abdul Kalam, who wanted primary teachers to inculcate creativity in schoolchildren,” she said.
Another AIPA member said that unless the government spends more and rationalises its expenditure on education like in the UK and France, state-run schools will continue to remain “bureaucratic exercises”.
The mushrooming of private schools and rising drop-out rates are a result of the government’s failure to focus on the “holistic development” of school education, he said.
“We want a central regulatory body for fee structuring with a decent representation of parents,” said Ashok Agarwal, President, AIPA.
“The government should amend the Right to Education Act to make schooling compulsory up to class 12 instead of 8th standard. Also, school education should be made completely free,” he said.