Monday, March 25, 2013

Pvt member's bill seeks to widen Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Actambit

Pvt member's bill seeks to widen Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act ambit

Published: Monday, Mar 25, 2013, 3:11 IST
By Sanjeev Devasia | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

A private member’s bill of 2011 is likely to come up for discussion in the legislative council next week. The bill is aimed at amending the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act and its application in the state.
Although such a bill may not be passed or accepted by the state government, the amendments sought in the Act could appeal to many.
From including pre-school under the ambit of the Act to widening the age limit from the current six to fourteen to three to eighteen and introducing remedial measures for weak children, the bill widens the scope of the Act.
The amendment seeks to redefine the definition of children belonging to a disadvantaged group to include children of educationally backward classes, minorities, those with physical challenges, children of sex workers, displaced communities and migrant labourers, orphans and homeless, child labourers and children in custody among others.
What can be a game changer is the amendment to defining the meaning of a school as any recognised, universally designed pre-school centre or school imparting pre-school and school education.
Leader of Opposition Vinod Tawde, who is one of the members moving the bill, said, “All that we are seeking is for the state to have its own Act keeping the spirit of the Central Act intact.”
The state had cleared the RTE Rules in 2011 to facilitate the implementation of the Act that was passed by the Centre in 2009. It was meant to ensure that even children from slums get education in private schools, as according to the norms, these institutes have to reserve 25% of their seats for children from disadvantaged sections and pay for a part of their education.

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