When contacted, school principal, Sangeeta Nagar, accepted charging EWS parents for books and uniforms.
New Delhi: As the new academic session is set to start, parents of students admitted under EWS category are being asked by schools to pay for books and uniforms, as against the government guidelines.
According to guidelines by Directorate of Education, schools “shall not charge tuition fee from the students admitted under EWS/DG category. Further, schools have to provide the free books, school uniforms and writing material to each and every student admitted under EWS/DG category, as is mandated for other children.”
However, contrary to this, private schools are “forcing” parents of Economically Weaker Section-Disadvantaged Group students to shell out money for books, uniforms, and transport.
“The school said only tuition fee is not charged and rest we will have to pay otherwise the admission will be cancelled. I told the principal about the guidelines but she insisted on paying Rs 8,500,” said a parent, a daily-wage labourer, who did not wish to be identified. His child has got admission under EWS category in Sachdeva Convent School in Sangam Vihar.
When contacted, school principal, Sangeeta Nagar, accepted charging EWS parents for books and uniforms and said it is being done as the school hasn’t received any money from the government yet.
Another parent, whose child got admission in Kulachi Hansraj Model School in Ashok Vihar under EWS category, said that he has paid Rs 3,000 till now for books and uniforms. Accounts officer of the school, R K Tyagi, said that the school hasn’t received any money for EWS admissions since 2014-15 and it will reimburse parents if it gets money from the government.
“It is wrong on the part of schools to charge money from EWS parents when the government has clearly said that schools have to provide free books and uniforms. The problem is between them and the government. They should not make parents suffer for it,” said Sumit Vohra, founder of admissions-nursery.com, an online forum for parent community.
Meanwhile, parents of general category are also alleging that private schools are overcharging for books and stationery.
A parent, a member of the forum, has started an online petition against it that has been signed by around 8,000 parents till now and will be sent to Education Minister Manish Sisodia by Mr Vohra.