The dispute between parents of some students studying in Sinhagad Road’s Dnyanganga English Medium School and the school management over fee hike is refusing to die down, with the former approaching education department officials for help.
In the third week of November, a group of parents had protested outside the school campus demanding to meet the management after the school had refused to disburse the report cards of children whose parents had not paid the disputed hiked fees. After 15 days, the situation remains the same and on Monday, the aggrieved parents approached the Deputy Director of Education (DyDE), Pune, asking for relief. The DyDE issued an order to the school management, asking it to hand over the report cards or face action.
In their application, the parents have not only asked for accessing report cards of students, but also highlighted smaller issues like school not allowing parents to handover tiffins, forgotten at home, to children and so on.
The parents had approached the Divisional Fee Regulatory Committee (DFRC) in the past against the fee hike, stating that the hike, which was over 50 per cent, went against the law and also claimed that the Executive Parents Teachers Association (EPTA)’s permission was not sought. Though the tribunal had passed an order in favour of parents and fixed the maximum fee at Rs 22,885, the school moved the High Court against the decision. Since the matter is now pending and the HC granted interim relief to the school, the latter is now demanding that the parents pay the hiked fees until such decision was reached.
“We are ready to pay up to Rs 25,000 but the school is demanding Rs 30,000. We refuse to pay it since the DFRC had clearly ruled in our favour and the HC has not yet given any decision. The school is just taking advantage of the situation. Also how can they make the students suffer like this? Even they were not shown their marks, it disturbs them. So, we approached the DyDE on Monday,” said Amit Dharane, vice-president of the EPTA.
Despite repeated attempts to reach the school management through phone and email, they did not respond to queries. Meanwhile, Dinkar Temkar, deputy director of education, issued an order Monday, asking the school to immediately hand over the report cards to students. In the order issued on December 11 (a copy of which is available with The Indian Express), Temkar reminded school authorities that holding back report cards was a violation of both Right to Education (RTE) Act as well as the Fee Regulation Act and Capitation Fee Act. The letter also warns school management of action by the education department if the order was not followed.