This strike over the seven-month tussle between the schools and the parents of the students over fees, has now taken a serious turn.
Previously, the Rajasthan High Court had harshly criticized the state government for deferring the fee submission issue for the last many months and asked them to submit an affidavit by the 19th of October. Private schools in Jaipur and other cities in Rajasthan had been barred from collecting any kind of fees till the 20th of October. Now, the forum of private schools in Rajasthan, including CBSE, Rajasthan Board and missionary schools, has called for an indefinite mass strike from 5th of November onwards. This strike over the seven-month tussle between the schools and the parents of the students over fees, has now taken a serious turn.
50,000 schools and 11 lakh employees affected
Earlier the court, after hearing out all the parties, had said that the fees will continue to be withheld till the next order and it was fixed by the High Court that 70% of the tuition fees need to be paid in 3 instalments by parents, on September 9.
In a press conference called on Monday, the forum stated that the private schools have now entered into severe financial crisis, due to which they are compelled to close down. Reportedly, the school managements had been trying to mitigate the whole situation till date. However, due to the lack of funds, the schools are not able to bear the running costs and pay salaries to their staff.
The forum requested the Chief Minister of the state to step in and assist them in these tough times. It said that since the last seven months, the teachers have been conducting online classes for students, but it has now become impossible to pay salaries to the staff and meet the daily expenses of the schools.
School owners have requested the authorities to keep the court judgement dated September 9 intact, so that the parents are clear with regard to the fees to be paid before Diwali or else the government should provide some relief fund to the schools. Further, the state government had issued orders that CBSE schools and the Rajasthan board should reduce the tuition fees by 30-40% in accordance with the reduced syllabus.
The forum said that these recent orders are creating a lot of dilemmas and have ambiguities. The delay is badly affecting 50,000 schools and 11 lakh employees. If things keep on progressing on this course, then against their wishes, the schools will be forced to close indefinitely from November 5 onwards, it said. The call has been backed by the Progressive School Association of Rajasthan, Catholic Schools Group and School Shiksha Pariwar, among others.