Educational experts and parents have largely welcomed the Supreme Court decision upholding the constitutional validity of the Right to Education Act,2009.
The observers have also said that the government,institutional authorities and teachers will have to make efforts to ensure that children coming from the underprivileged section of the society adapt to the culture of private schools.
Asmita Choudhari,a parent from Gokhale Nagar,said the governments step and the courts decision was essential given the huge number of such students and now the onus will be on schools to effectively implement it.
The culture of private schools is different from that of government schools. It is essential to make the underprivileged students feel comfortable in these schools and ensure they are not discriminated on the basis of their socio-economic background, said Choudhari.
Ajay Potekar,whose 13-year-old daughter studies in Sardar Dastur Noshar Girls High School,said,the inclusion of underprivileged children to aided private schools will ensure that the children from different social-cultural backgrounds get to know and understand each other.
It will be a matter of pride for me to say that my children have friends from all sections of society. This will make them mature and responsible citizens, said Potekar.
Observers said while it is apparent that the decision will help the children from poor background,it is necessary that the government agencies and school authorities ensure that the poor children are not discriminated.
Educationist Ramesh Panase said the court decision doesnt mean that the Act would be implemented. The Act was passed in 2009 and nothing was done till now. Even after the courts decision,it will at least take another year for its implementation.
The English medium private schools do not have a mentality to accommodate students from underprivileged section. I am sure there would be instances where school authorities would avoid admitting poor children. They can show fake poor students instead of admitting the real ones, said Panase.
For effective implementation of the Act,the biggest challenge would be to change the attitude of of the private institution authorities and teachers towards underprivileged students. If implemented effectively,the Act can contribute towards nullifying inequality,said Pansase.