Tuesday, April 9, 2013

1,500 schools register online for recognition

1,500 schools register online for recognition

TNN Apr 2, 2013, 05.38AM IST

NEW DELHI: By Sunday night, 1,500 schools had registered online for recognition, claimed a schools association. Apparently that still leaves over 700 unrecognized schools that may close. Education minister Kiran Walia, however, says she is yet to see reliable data and has asked the department not to take "hasty action".
DSPSMA has counted schools covering less than 200 square yards in Mangolpuri, Jahangirpuri and Trilokpuri and found 92. "These are schools in the heart of slums and are attended by children of the very poor," says R C Jain, president, Delhi State Public Schools Management Association (DSPSMA).

Jyoti Convent School in Jahangirpuri is a case in point. Started by a former tutor, Jyoti Saxena, on the request of locals, the school is 15 years old and teaches till fifth grade. "The teachers belong to the area and we offer free coaching in the evening to some students. Kids here come from very poor families," says Saxena. But her school covers only 50 sq yards.
After protests by managements of unrecognized schools and schools bodies, the government had reduced the minimum land a primary school (till Class V) must cover to 200 square yards (around 166 sqm) from 800 sqm on March 22.
Walia says the government can "evolve a policy" only after it has full data. "The number 700 has no basis if we don't have all the details... But we can't have a very cramped situation either," she says.
However, it was business-as-usual at schools that were supposed to close after the RTE implementation deadline expired. "If the government closes these schools, we will protest again," says Jain. Meanwhile, there will be a glut of conferences and protests on the RTE implementation. On Monday, Joint Operation of Social Help (JOSH), protested at ITO against the "non-implementation" of the RTE Act.

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