Including me, we praised a lot the RTE act, we supported it last 12 years. But now I guess we were wrong because we trusted it blindly and skipped to see the deep inside the Act and praised the act emotionally, many clauses of the RTE are very dangerous for the poor and lower middle classes.
I met first time Vinod Raina in 2000 in Kanpur in a meet of education. I found Raina does not aware too much with the ground realities. I spent a week with Anil Sadgopal in 2002 in Hyderabad and discussed many educational issues.
I have been an active part of an organisation voluntarily who has been working for primary education for underprivileged children in all over India. We established many thousands centres for the poor children in very remote villages. I started and established 10 non-formal education centres for the children of migrant-workers between 1999-2001.
I am writing above to let you know that I understand the crisis of education systems for poor classes in India.
The dangerous drawbacks of RTE in Uttar Pradesh:
After 31.03.2013, no-one could run any formal or non-formal education centre, it is illegal under RTE and penalty starts with Rs 1 Lakh, if the formal school does not follow infrastructure standards set by the governments.
Thousands of notices have been issued to the formal recognised and non-formal schools not following the infrastructure standards set by the government.
Following standards of the recognised school means around 2 million Rs expenses on infrastructures not included the land price. And recurring expenses will be around 0.15 to 0.2 million Rs per month to run a small school. This means, these schools will have to charge a handsome amount of fee from the students.
Now a poor or lower middle class student has only two option-
- To drop the education and only enrolled in the government schools
- To study in ill-managed government schools
Government is not arranging the facility of quality education but stoping community to arrange a quality education by possible means, what will the children of poor and lower middle class do?
The RTE will create a high discriminations between poor and rich.
Poor and lower middle classes will get education in ill-managed government schools and upper middle class & upper class will get education in costly public schools.
We welcomed 25% seats in public schools for poor children but the RTE in Uttar Pradesh demands the two basic documents from a student from a poor and lower middle classes to study in a costly public schools under 25% quota-
- Students must produce a proof that there is no government school in his/her area
- Students must produce a letter from the principals of the all government schools in the area that seats are full in their schools to the education officer
Just for a note-
Is RTE not a black act for poor and lower middle classes?
Vivek Umrao Glendenning