Sunday, January 26, 2014

MDMK alleges fraud in RTE admissions

MDMK alleges fraud in RTE admissions

TNN Dec 4, 2013, 01.15AM IST

COIMBATORE: Alleging that the admissions under the Right To Education (RTE) Act is not being properly followed in the district, MDMK activists claimed that the state government should implement a single window process or a centralized system of selecting and admitting students under RTE norms directly through the school education department. They also claimed that most of the RTE admissions in private schools were made without properly following annual income norms. Only students from families with annual income less than Rs 2 lakh are eligible to be admitted under RTE quota. The income limit is not applicable for students hailing from SC and ST communities.
"Most of the private schools have admitted students from families with annual income of more than Rs 2 lakh, which is applicable for all students other than those from SC community. The schools are trying to fill up the RTE quota and this would in turn deny the benefits of the Act to students actually hailing from economically weaker sections," said V Easwaran, secretary, state youth wing of MDMK.
MDMK activists claimed that they collected information about 263 children admitted through RTE in eight different private schools in the city through RTI and it was revealed that only four students had submitted all necessary documents as per government-prescribed norms. The income certificates of the parents were submitted only in 57 applications whereas the remaining 297 children were admitted from BC, MBC and other categories without any proof of income.
However, R Visalakshi, president, Tamil Nadu Private Schools Association dismissed the allegations and said all private schools in the district have followed the necessary norms for admitting students under the RTE Act. She also pointed out that the government was yet to pay the reimbursement to the schools for students admitted in RTE quota.
Coimbatore district has recorded the highest percentage of RTE admissions with 2,163 students being admitted to 262 private schools in the district out of the total 19,971 students admitted under RTE across Tamil Nadu.
Delhi Polls: Cong fails to draw mileage for passing RTE Act by Pallavi Polanki Dec 3, 2013 #Congress #Delhi Election 2013 #JP Aggarwal #Politics #PoliticsDecoder #RTE #RTE Forum #Sheila Dikshit #States 4 CommentsEmailPrint New Delhi: This is Delhi's first election after the landmark Right to Education (RTE) Act was passed in 2009. And yet this flagship scheme of the Congress party finds barely any mention in Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit’s campaign speeches. Desperate for recognition for its 'development' record of building flyovers and metro lines, the Congress seems to have lost an opportunity to champion its own landmark law in its election campaign. An election campaign that emphasised the party’s renewed commitment to implement the RTE Act, which even four years after the law was passed is honoured more in breach, would probably have earned Dikshit more public support than her speeches on building airports and sports complexes. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. Image courtesy PIB Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. Image courtesy PIB The Delhi Congress, however, denies outright that is has missed the bus on RTE and ignored the issue of the school education altogether in its campaign. Says JP Aggarwal, president of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee, "Who says that education is not an issue in this election. We are talking about all the five issues of the manifesto -- development, social welfare, transport facilities, medical facilities and education. Education is one of the points we have been raising and have been doing a lot of work on." Asked why education was not a bigger issue politically, Aggarwal said, "Why do you want to politicise education? It is a facility given by the government to the voters. And we have been promoting it, opening more schools, providing mid-day meals. It is, after all, a law the Congress-led UPA government has enacted." Why then despite the Congress’s role in implementing the Act, Delhi Congress failed to make RTE a significant poll issue? Says the North East Delhi MP, "Leaders are given only 10-15 minutes to speak (at the election rallies). This is a political election and it is not possible to emphasise on one point alone. Education is mentioned in the agenda. It is in our manifesto. We have been doing work on education for last 10-15 years. It is for the people to see and appreciate." But it is not the Congress party alone that has failed to bring up the issue of equitable education or answer crucial questions on how they plan to provide even the bare minimum standards of education to lakhs of children in Delhi who go to government schools. The BJP and the Aam Aadmi Party too have failed in raising the level of election debates beyond personalities and in moving beyond the age-old ‘bijli sadak pani’ idea of the development. Condemning the lack of serious attention paid by political parties to implement the RTE Act, members of Delhi’s RTE Forum say, that while party manifestoes have talked about a few dimensions of the RTE Act, the "manifestoes have failed to see the education scenario in toto and provide strategies to improve quality education and ensure RTE Act in the state". The RTE Forum is a network of voluntary education groups, teachers’ unions and civil society activists. At a press conference on Monday, the Delhi RTE Forum presented ‘one lakh votes’ that the they had gathered during its ‘Vote for Education’ campaign aimed at mobilising public support to make education an political issue. Speaking to the press, Anni Nammala of the forum said, "Our expectation is that this election should be fought on issues and not on personalities. We want education to be made a political issue. We have collected one lakh votes from people across Delhi’s bastis as a symbolic gesture of what they want from their government. And people’s demand is that quality education is very important to get ahead in life...We also studied the manifestoes of political parties but we find that parties do not have an overall strategy on how to implement the Act." Responding to how political parties compared when it came addressing education in their manifestoes, Nammala said, "If you look at the manifestoes, the spirit of RTE is missing in all of them. The Congress is happy that it has passed the Act and they have boldly said so. BJP speaks only of Right to Health but is silent on RTE. And Aam Aadmi Party says they will make government schools on par with private schools. But they don’t have any plan for increasing budgetary allocation for education or any institutional mechanism for training teachers which is very important to improve quality of education in government schools." Responding to a question on whether AAP’s model of making schools responsible to mohalla sabhas was a good one, the forum member said, “With a country like ours, governments have to enter into governance partnerships. While the idea of mohalla sabhas is good, its implementation is problematic." Speaking about the forum’s demands from the next government, Ambarish Rai, national convener of the RTE Forum said, "The three year deadline to meet the RTE requirements expired in March 2013. No party has so far come up with a roadmap on how to implement the RTE Act. The election is a good opportunity to make education a political issue. We have come up with a charter of demands for the next government. And if it fails to implement the RTE Act, we will start a mass movement. Education has been neglected by all parties. The next government should take RTE more seriously." The RTE Forum’s charter of demands includes ensuring inclusive education, putting a stop to handing over of government schools to private players, ensuring community participation in school management, introducing grievance redressal mechanisms for effective implementation of the RTE Act and increasing budgetary allocation to education.

Read more at: http://www.firstpost.com/politics/delhi-polls-cong-fails-to-draw-mileage-for-passing-rte-act-1264309.html?utm_source=ref_article
Delhi Polls: Cong fails to draw mileage for passing RTE Act by Pallavi Polanki Dec 3, 2013 #Congress #Delhi Election 2013 #JP Aggarwal #Politics #PoliticsDecoder #RTE #RTE Forum #Sheila Dikshit #States 4 CommentsEmailPrint New Delhi: This is Delhi's first election after the landmark Right to Education (RTE) Act was passed in 2009. And yet this flagship scheme of the Congress party finds barely any mention in Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit’s campaign speeches. Desperate for recognition for its 'development' record of building flyovers and metro lines, the Congress seems to have lost an opportunity to champion its own landmark law in its election campaign. An election campaign that emphasised the party’s renewed commitment to implement the RTE Act, which even four years after the law was passed is honoured more in breach, would probably have earned Dikshit more public support than her speeches on building airports and sports complexes. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. Image courtesy PIB Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. Image courtesy PIB The Delhi Congress, however, denies outright that is has missed the bus on RTE and ignored the issue of the school education altogether in its campaign. Says JP Aggarwal, president of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee, "Who says that education is not an issue in this election. We are talking about all the five issues of the manifesto -- development, social welfare, transport facilities, medical facilities and education. Education is one of the points we have been raising and have been doing a lot of work on." Asked why education was not a bigger issue politically, Aggarwal said, "Why do you want to politicise education? It is a facility given by the government to the voters. And we have been promoting it, opening more schools, providing mid-day meals. It is, after all, a law the Congress-led UPA government has enacted." Why then despite the Congress’s role in implementing the Act, Delhi Congress failed to make RTE a significant poll issue? Says the North East Delhi MP, "Leaders are given only 10-15 minutes to speak (at the election rallies). This is a political election and it is not possible to emphasise on one point alone. Education is mentioned in the agenda. It is in our manifesto. We have been doing work on education for last 10-15 years. It is for the people to see and appreciate." But it is not the Congress party alone that has failed to bring up the issue of equitable education or answer crucial questions on how they plan to provide even the bare minimum standards of education to lakhs of children in Delhi who go to government schools. The BJP and the Aam Aadmi Party too have failed in raising the level of election debates beyond personalities and in moving beyond the age-old ‘bijli sadak pani’ idea of the development. Condemning the lack of serious attention paid by political parties to implement the RTE Act, members of Delhi’s RTE Forum say, that while party manifestoes have talked about a few dimensions of the RTE Act, the "manifestoes have failed to see the education scenario in toto and provide strategies to improve quality education and ensure RTE Act in the state". The RTE Forum is a network of voluntary education groups, teachers’ unions and civil society activists. At a press conference on Monday, the Delhi RTE Forum presented ‘one lakh votes’ that the they had gathered during its ‘Vote for Education’ campaign aimed at mobilising public support to make education an political issue. Speaking to the press, Anni Nammala of the forum said, "Our expectation is that this election should be fought on issues and not on personalities. We want education to be made a political issue. We have collected one lakh votes from people across Delhi’s bastis as a symbolic gesture of what they want from their government. And people’s demand is that quality education is very important to get ahead in life...We also studied the manifestoes of political parties but we find that parties do not have an overall strategy on how to implement the Act." Responding to how political parties compared when it came addressing education in their manifestoes, Nammala said, "If you look at the manifestoes, the spirit of RTE is missing in all of them. The Congress is happy that it has passed the Act and they have boldly said so. BJP speaks only of Right to Health but is silent on RTE. And Aam Aadmi Party says they will make government schools on par with private schools. But they don’t have any plan for increasing budgetary allocation for education or any institutional mechanism for training teachers which is very important to improve quality of education in government schools." Responding to a question on whether AAP’s model of making schools responsible to mohalla sabhas was a good one, the forum member said, “With a country like ours, governments have to enter into governance partnerships. While the idea of mohalla sabhas is good, its implementation is problematic." Speaking about the forum’s demands from the next government, Ambarish Rai, national convener of the RTE Forum said, "The three year deadline to meet the RTE requirements expired in March 2013. No party has so far come up with a roadmap on how to implement the RTE Act. The election is a good opportunity to make education a political issue. We have come up with a charter of demands for the next government. And if it fails to implement the RTE Act, we will start a mass movement. Education has been neglected by all parties. The next government should take RTE more seriously." The RTE Forum’s charter of demands includes ensuring inclusive education, putting a stop to handing over of government schools to private players, ensuring community participation in school management, introducing grievance redressal mechanisms for effective implementation of the RTE Act and increasing budgetary allocation to education.

Read more at: http://www.firstpost.com/politics/delhi-polls-cong-fails-to-draw-mileage-for-passing-rte-act-1264309.html?utm_source=ref_article

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