Parents Fume As Schools Closure Drive Goes On
HYDERABAD:Hundreds of parents in the city, who are breathing easy assuming that they have got admission in the right school for their wards, have to restart their search.
For, many of the ‘right' schools have been proven ‘wrong' by the Education Department which has been vigorously on the ‘school sealing drive' for the past two days.
On Tuesday, department officials either closed down or issued notices to ten more unrecognised schools, five each in Hyderabad and Ranga Reddy districts.
Each of these schools has already enrolled 200 to 400 students and even collected fee instalments from the parents. Seventeen other schools in both the districts had already been closed down.
“Hearing about the school's reputation, I removed my boy from another school and enrolled him in class IX here from this academic year. I also paid Rs.8,000 towards fee. Now what will happen to his studies?” questioned a visibly upset parent Anasuyamma whose son is studying in Kartikeya School, Karmanghat.
The school ignored repeated notices by the department and failed to send proposals for recognition, forcing the officials to close it down, informed the Deputy Education Officer R.Rohini who led the drive in Saroornagar.
It was sealed and closed down after the children were collected by the parents later in the day.
Classes were yet to start in other schools raided by the officials in Saroornagar division, which included Sri Chaitanya Techno School, Meerpet, Gowtham Model School, Ravindra Bharathi, and Narayana E-Techno School, all at Hastinapuram.
Instead of sealing them, officials pasted posters in the name of District Education Officer alerting parents against admitting their wards there.
Parents who arrived for enquiries at the corporate schools were shocked to know that they did not have government recognition. Some fumed at the officials for taking up the drive after most admissions were done. “What will happen to the children's future if you close the school down now? It is a famous school and has branches at so many locations, that we never imagined it would not have government recognition,” argued P.Vanaja, a parent, who brought her son to write the entrance test for admission into class IX at Sri Chaitanya Techno School.
Parents were not aware of the recognition status of the respective schools and expressed ignorance about any such information.
“We wanted to shift our child from another school, and zeroed upon this school as it is quite well-known. We did not know it lacked recognition,” said Srinivas Reddy, a parent seeking counselling at Gowtham Model School.
Ranga Reddy District Education Officer M. Somi Reddy said efforts would be made to accommodate students from these schools in other schools in the vicinity.
Schools which have already begun the process for recognition will be given grace time, while the unresponsive ones will be closed down, he informed. “The schools were closed as they failed to take permission despite repeated notices,” said T. Ravi Kumar, Deputy Education Officer, Nampally who led the team that issued notices to five schools. They include Shring Rushi Public School, St. Marks School, Jubilee High School and Chaitanya Techno School. Except St. Marks School where the pre-primary sections were on, all others were yet to begin functioning after summer vacation.
Relaxation of norms
Raj Kumar Chouhan, Correspondent of St. Marks School said that they have been demanding for relaxation of some norms for applying for permission. He said students will not face any problems with the closure as they were ready to pay the fine amount for the time being to open the school again and later apply for permission.
Notices to 257 schools
In Hyderabad region 257 schools were served notices for closure as they lacked the required permission, according to the Hyderabad DEO, A. Subba Reddy. But most of them failed to respond and continued to admit students. What happens to these students is a question being debated by the authorities.
They are in a dilemma whether to permit these schools with yet another warning to secure the required facilities for permission or ask the parents to look for another school.