“I went to one of the schools in Budgam District, to seek admission for my children for class LKG. I was shocked when the school management asked me to pay 90000 above for the admission. Last year we admitted our children in the same school that time we pay around 80000,” said Farooq Ahmad a resident of Bemina Srinagar.
Another parent, Waseem Ahmad a resident of Padshaibagh who had gone to various schools to seek admission to his two kids said the situation is similar.
The aggrieved parents outside various private schools in Srinagar, demanding an explanation for the arbitrary sudden fee hike without any prior notice.
Parents have complained that the facilities and school infrastructure in various private schools is not upto the mark.
Sources said that it has become very difficult for middle-class parents to get their children admitted to private schools as instances have been reported where heavy sums are being demanded by the school authorities for admissions.
In the absence of any check from the state government, many private schools have demanded Rs huge admission fee for nursery and LKG under the pretext of their institutions being English medium and providing quality education.
The common People have expressed concern over the abnormal increase in the fee pattern of private schools this year.
They suggested that government should also come out with legislation for regulating admissions and fee structure of private schools.
Even teachers serving in government schools are also unwilling to send their children to government schools due to lack of quality education and other facilities. This has resulted in high rate of dropout in government schools this year.
It may be recalled that successive governments who ruled the state have been making tall claims about rapid improvement in the standard of basic education in the state-run schools, but today there has been no perceptible qualitative change visible to convince the parents admitting their wards.
Parents also complained that over the few months several private schools have hiked school fees under different heads printing charges, other fee and activity fee from current academic session without consulting them.
“These schools are minting money from us in the name of disseminating education. The management of these schools never seek suggestions from parents before hiking the fee,” said a group of aggrieved parents.
It is to mention here that Authorities had suspended the recognition of two prominent private schools in Srinagar for “exorbitant fee hike and non-compliance of orders” from the Department of School Education.
“The authorities had ordered suspension of recognition of RP School Mallabagh and Green Valley Educational Institute, Ellahibagh, for exorbitant fee hike and non-compliance of orders from the Department,” an official spokesman had said.
He had said Director School Education Kashmir GN Itoo has cautioned all the heads of the private institutions not to hike the fee on their own and comply with the instructions and orders from the department in letter and spirit.
Itoo had also appealed the parents to bring into the notice of the department any compliant regarding the arbitrary hike in fee and other related issues so that the erring institutions are made accountable and timely action against them under norms is initiated.