Wednesday, March 13, 2013

State government's power diluted in CBSE Bill?

State government's power diluted in CBSE Bill?

27th January 2013 08:06 AM
The proposal of upgrading the status of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to a statutory body is expected to result in the better functioning of the CBSE schools.
The state government, however, fears that its own powers might be diluted in the proposed CBSE Bill. The Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) will convene a meeting of state education secretaries to discuss the pros and cons of the CBSE Bill in New Delhi on January 28.
At present, the CBSE is registered as a society carrying out the functions of conducting board exams and announcing results of students of its affiliated schools. With the CBSE Bill, the board will become a statutory body, which can take its own decisions through a board of governors.
“As of now, schools affiliated to this board have to comply with the rules framed by the state. In the Karnataka context, we were able to exercise some control over these schools through our Right to Education (RTE) Act rules. Instead of state-specific rules, these schools will become untouchable with a Central Act,” a senior Education Department official told Express on condition of anonymity.
The state government will go into the New Delhi meeting apprehensive in three areas — issue of no objection certificates (NOC), definition of minority and implementation of RTE. The CBSE Bill draft says that the state governments have to issue NOC’s within 30 days, else it is deemed issued. Also, the Bill will define appropriate local authorities for definition of minority status and supervision of schools for RTE implementation.
“Most Acts under which we have been making rules define local authority as the state government. We will push for the recognition of the state government as an authority in the Bill. If a non-state actor is given authority, there is a fear that the Bill will legalise two standards of education—one that involves government schools and another of the elitist CBSE schools,” the official said.
CBSE has close to 13,000 schools affiliated to it, of which more than 700 are in Karnataka.
Primary and Secondary Education secretary, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, state project director and other officials from the state will attend the meeting.

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