Ardhra Nair : Pune, Sat Sep 21 2013, 04:42 hrs
The state government has hiked the reimbursement amount given to schools for admitting students from economically backward sections (EWS) from Rs 13,636 to Rs 15,474 per student per year. The EWS students are admitted under the 25 per cent reserved seats as per the Right to Education Act, 2009.
Till date, no reimbursement has been given to any schools in the district on this account. But the Zila Parishad has claimed to have streamlined the process and the schools will be reimbursed by November end. Officials said Rs 13,636 per student per year was determined last year.
"The government has increased the amount to Rs 15,474. The amount is calculated by dividing the total expenditure incurred by government on each student inclusive of all the grants by total number of students," said Mushtaq Shaikh, ZP education officer.
He said the reimbursement to each school will be equal to either the expenditure incurred by the school in 2012-13 on each child as his/her tuition fee or Rs 15, 474, whichever is less. This amount will be given in two installments," said Shaikh.
The forms by ZP, which will be distributed among schools, are descriptive and have specific columns for the type of disadvantage of the student. "The forms have been made so that the ZP also has a record of the status of RTE implementation in the schools and the kind of students who get admission. The schools are supposed to give details such as medium in which the students have been admitted, whether they are socially, physically or economically disadvantaged. There is also a column for the EWS students who have passed class I last year (2012-13) and have been admitted to class two this year (2013-14). This will tell us about the retention rate. Hence the entire process has been streamlined and once the data is compiled, we will understand the exact status of the RTE Act, which makes 25 per cent seats mandatory for students," said a ZP official.
Interestingly, till this date hardly any proposals of reimbursement has been received by ZP from any schools.
"First of all the implementation of 25 per cent reserved quota for EWS students started in April 1, 2010. But then there was a lot of confusion and the real implementation started in 2011. But even then there were only a handful of schools and most of them had not followed the RTE norms to be eligible for reimbursement. Hence even the one or two that applied were not eligible for reimbursement," said Shaikh.
"We have asked the corporations to send out these forms to schools. There will be meetings with schools. By October 20, the forms will be in and we will send the consolidated data to primary education. By November, the schools will get reimbursement," said the official.
Website to monitor RTE implementation
A new website with info about the schools in the district, the seats reserved under RTE, the number of admissions and various categories under which admissions were done will soon be available. "This is the first time a website is being made to monitor RTE in the state. It is being made by a Baramati-based firm and is in the testing stage," said Mushtaq Shaikh, ZP education officer. "Once the website is uploaded, all the schools will have to log in and enter their details. Anybody can access the information and hence the entire process will become transparent," said Shaikh.