Schools fail to give details on RTE seats

Two weeks past deadline,Education Department fails to take any action.

Written by Ritika Jha | Chandigarh | Published:May 4, 2012 1:44 am

Two weeks past deadline,Education Department fails to take any action.

While the deadline for a few private schools to provide the status of admission to seats reserved under the Right to Education (RTE) Act lapsed two weeks ago,the UT Education Department has failed to take action in this regard.

In a communication circulated to nearly 30 private schools in the city on April 17,the Department had set a two-day deadline for the schools to provide details of name of the entry-level class,total number of seats in entry class,number of seats reserved under the RTE (as per 25 per cent quota for underprivileged children),number of applications received for admission to the reserved seats,number of RTE seats already filled and number of RTE seats lying vacant.

However,a number of schools have failed to provide the details to date,confirmed the department officials.

The officials had earlier claimed that appropriate action would be taken against the schools immediately “in case,the schools fail to respond to the communication within the specified time.”

When contacted on Thursday,DPI (Schools) Sandeep Hans said,“We will take action against the schools soon.”

Meanwhile,UT Education Secretary,V K Singh,said,“Keeping in view the interests of other students,we cannot act against any of the schools immediately. But we will certainly take appropriate action against the defaulters,in accordance with the provisions of the Act.”

As per information available with the department,a total of 318 RTE seats were lying vacant across 30 schools,as on March 20.

In its communication circulated on April 17,the department had also asked the schools to provide “reasons for rejection of applications,if any”. Also,it was stated that the unclaimed RTE seats could not be converted into general seats without the directions of the department.

On the contrary,Director of Vivek High School and President of Independent Schools Association (ISA),H S Mamik,said,“We could not keep the seats vacant for such long,so we have admitted general category candidates to these seats. The Department has failed to provide us any clarity on the reimbursements. How can they expect us to keep the seats vacant when they have not paid us even for the last year’s admissions.”

Meanwhile,Adminstrator of St Kabir School (Sector 26),Gurpreet Bakshi,refused to comment when asked about the status of RTE seats lying unclaimed.

As per the provisions of the RTE Act,all private schools,except for unaided minority schools,are supposed to reserve 25 per cent seats for children from economically weaker sections of society and provide them free education.

Out of a total of 63 private schools which come under the purview of the Act,33 have filled their RTE seats in full capacity,going by the records provided the department,last month. The remaining 30 had been asked to furnish details of vacant seats.

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