Friday, 15 April 2016

HC asks State to file reply on Minimum Land requirements by Schools




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Schools facing closure seek court directive

STAFF REPORTER

CHENNAI, April 14, 2016

Court asks State government to file reply to the petition filed by association

The Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary Matriculation and Higher Secondary School Managements’ Association on Wednesday approached the Madras High Court on behalf of 746 private schools which are on the verge of closure, as the Government Order granting exemption to these schools from complying with the minimum land requirement would expire by May 31.

The association has asked the High Court to direct the State government to pass appropriate orders on the recommendations submitted by an Expert Committe with reference to the minimum land requirement.

‘Compliance with norms’

The petitioner claimed that all the 746 schools were established several years ago and were recognised under the Code of Matriculation Schools and were in compliance with the original norms fixed under the code.

While so, the government, based on Professor S.V. Chittibabu Commission’s recommendations, issued orders prescribing new fee structure and infrastructural facilities depending upon the location of the schools.

After extending the time prescribed to comply with the regulation, the government on March 5, 2013 appointed an Expert Committee to go into the issue of land requirements.

Subsequently, on August 18, 2015 the government stated through a GO that 746 schools did not meet the minimum land requirement.

The GO said pending final decision of the government the recognition of these schools would stand renewed up to May 31, 2016 as a one time measure.

Claiming that the fate of about 11 lakh students in these schools depended on the decision to be taken by the government, the petitioner sought the court to direct the authorities to pass appropriate order within a time frame fixed by the court.

Admitting the plea, Justice R. Subbiah directed the State government to file a reply to the petition.


Also read the related stories

Schools at risk of losing recognition seek leniency

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT

CHENNAI, March 19, 2016

Say those established before 2004 should be provided recognition

Cite the interest of 25,000 teachers and 5 lakh students

Representatives of 746 schools that are in danger of losing recognition on May 31 for failing to meet certain stipulated norms have appealed to the government that schools established before 2004 should be provided recognition in the interest of 25,000 teachers and five lakh students.

The representatives of the schools which had not complied with the recommendations of the S.V. Chittibabu Commission met the media on Friday and said the schools had to reduce their intake as they could not comply with the norms.

Following the commission’s recommendations, the government issued an order that schools should comply with the norms stipulated by the commission within five years. One of the norms is that it is mandatory for schools in corporation limits to have six grounds; those in district headquarters and municipality to have eight and 10 grounds respectively.

“In cities it is impossible to find land to the extent stipulated by the commission. Those who could find or rent space near the existing school have split the institution’s strength into two and are running the schools from these places,” said S.K. Venkattassala Pandian, general secretary of the Association of Matriculation Higher Secondary Schools and their managements in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry. The association also wants the government to implement a uniform syllabus across the country as the Supreme Court had rejected their plea that the uniform syllabus system, which is now in vogue in the State, was below par.

The members said students under the CBSE perform better than others and hence a uniform syllabus should be adopted. Mr. Pandian also said the association wanted the students from other States to be given the option of not studying Tamil. “We agree that all students whose native language is Tamil should learn the language. But the same should not be forced on children who come from outside States.” According to school education officials, however, as many as 8,400 students had been exempted from writing the Tamil language exam after they approached the court.

On whether there would be exemptions for those who join schools after middle school, an official said such decisions would have to be made after a new government is formed.


Also read the related stories

1. Removing thatched roofs is not the solution: Interview with Dr. S.S. Rajagopalan, educationist, at: http://www.frontline.in

2. GO regarding Minimum Land requirements: http://tnmatricschools.com

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

RTI and Labour Acs applicable to Schools

School is a Public Authority as defined under the RTI Act

The main issue in the case seemed to be whether Sanskriti School was a ‘public authority’ or not? At the hearing, it was stated by the Principal that although the Government did not give any grant for the day to day running of the School or for any other activity, it had given a substantial grant for setting up the infrastructure of the School in its initial phase. Secondly, as stated by the Respondent, the wife of the Cabinet Secretary is the Ex-Officio Chairperson of the Board of Management of the School and also that wives of other Civil Service Officers are on the Board of Management. On the basis of these two submissions, the Commission decided that the Sanskriti School did come under the purview of the RTI Act, 2005 as a ‘Public Authority’. Hence, it was incumbent on them to set up the infrastructure for supply of information as required under the RTI Act and also to respond to the RTI applications.


Applicability of RTI Act to Private and Unaided Schools

Decision No. 714/IC(A)/2007 dated 12/09/2007 on Appeal from Shri D.K. Chopra Vs Directorate of Education, GNCT of Delhi

Sources: http://cic.gov.in  

Labour Laws Applicable To Educational Institutions


Teacher is an 'employee' and entitled to gratuity benefits: HC - Indian Express


Which employees do not fall under the ambit of Industrial Dispute Act, 1947


Teachers and the Law


Will a school affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Educational come under the definition of 'Shop' or 'Commercial Establishment'? Answer: No 



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