Centre for Civil Society

Draft not for Circulation

THE RIGHT OF CHILDREN TO FREE AND COMPULSORY EDUCATION ACT, 2009-IMPACT ON BUDGET PRIVATE SCHOOLS

BACKGROUND
The right to education has had a long and chequered history in India. The Constitution states as one of the Directive Principles that the state shall endeavour to provide free and compulsory education to all children under the age of fourteen years. However Directive Principles cannot be enforced in a court of law unlike fundamental rights. In 1993 the Supreme Court stated in the case of J.P. Unnikrishnan vs. State of Andhra Pradesh that the right to education flows from right to life guaranteed under article 21 of the Constitution and that every child of this country has a right to free and compulsory education until the age of 14 years. In 2002 the 86th amendment to the Constitution introduced article 21-A making the right to education a fundamental right. However the manner in which this right was to be realised was to be prescribed by law. It is only in 2009, sixty-two years after Independence, that this law was passed in the form of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act (‘the Act’). The Act came into force on April 1, 2010. Under the scheme of the Act each state has to draft its own Rules to deal with the finer nuances and detailed implementation of the Act. Andhra Pradesh has come out with the draft Andhra Pradesh Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Rules, 2010 (the ‘Draft Rules) and asked for public comments on the same. The following is a short brief on key features of the Act and the Draft Rules and their impact on affordable private schools.

KEY FEATURES Prohibition on Screening and Collection of Capitation Fees
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 (‘Act’) has prohibited schools from screening children or parents at the time of admission. This implies that any method of selection other than a random method is in violation of the Act. The Human Resource Development Minister Shri Kapil Sibal has clarified that the Act does not prohibit schools from creating categories for admission such as children of alumni, siblings of children already studying in the school etc. Within these categories however, selection must be random. He has also

www.righttoeducation.in

Page 1

August 15.in Page 2 .com/Govt-toclarify-on-screening-route/Article1-586953. 25% Quota Under the Act all private aided schools have to provide free seats in proportion to the aid they receive subject to a minimum of 25%. Hindustan Times. The government shall reimburse schools in respect of children admitted under this quota on the basis of the government’s own per-child expenditure. 1 The Act has prohibited schools from collecting capitation fees. If no birth certificate is available then the Draft Rules provide that one of the following documents shall suffice: Hospital/ Auxiliary Nurse and Midwife (ANM) register record. Admission Process The Act provides that for the purpose of admission a child’s age shall be determined by the birth certificate. girl children etc. library. Where a child above six years of age has not been admitted in any school then he or she shall be admitted in a class appropriate to his or her age. These are number of teachers. play material. Under the Draft Rules every private school has to make an application in the form of selfdeclaration-cum-application in the Form-l to the District Education Officer. In such cases the child is shall have a right to receive special training. No child shall be denied admission for lack of age proof. anganwadi record. payment or contribution collected by the schools apart from the fee notified by it. who shall be designated authority to issue certificate of recognition. The Act provides a Schedule which contains norms and standards which private schools have to adhere to in order to get recognition. in such manner. and within such time limits as may be prescribed.aspx 1 www. working days/hours of instruction.Centre for Civil Society Draft not for Circulation clarified that the Act does not prohibit the establishment of schools targeting special sections such as tribals. self declaration by the parent or guardian.righttoeducation. games and sports equipment. working hours for teachers. 2010 http://www. Recognition The Act provides that all private schools have to obtain recognition within three years from the commencement of the Act. Govt to clarify on screening route.hindustantimes. teaching learning equipment. All unaided private schools have to reserve a minimum of 25% seats in the entry class to economically weaker sections and disadvantaged groups. According to the Draft Rules brought by the AP Government state that the children admitted under this quota shall not be segregated from other children nor shall they be discriminated from the rest of the children in any manner pertaining to entitlements and facilities such as text books. building. Capitation fee has been defined as any donation.

HIV affected and disabled = 5% SC = 10% ST = 4% b) Weaker sections which includes others viz. 2 • • • The Draft Rules have provided detailed guidelines as to composition of the SMCs.prsindia. The break-up of the quota will be as follows: a) Disadvantaged groups: Orphans. Proportionate representation has to be given to parents of children of disadvantaged groups and weaker sections in SMCs. BC.org/uploads/media/RTE/The%20Right%20of%20Children%20to%20Free%20and%20Compu lsory%20Education%20Amendment%20Bill%202010.000/.in Page 3 .Centre for Civil Society Draft not for Circulation uniforms. 2 Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill. Elected representatives and head teacher shall not have any voting rights in the SMCs.. 60. OCs (whose annual income is less than Rs.per annum) = 6% ---------Total = 25% ---------- School Management Committees All government and private aided schools are mandated under the Act to form School Management Committees (‘SMC’). parents/guardians of children. library and ICT facilities. extra-curricular and sports. The SMC has to consist of elected representatives of local authority. which shall be the basis for the plans and grants to be made by the government • perform such other functions as may be prescribed A Bill exempting minority institutions from having SMCs is to be introduced in Parliament.pdf www. Minorities. The functions of the Committee are as follows: monitor the working of the school prepare and recommend school development plan monitor the utilisation of the grants received from the appropriate Government or local authority or any other source • prepare a School Development Plan. 2010 http://www. Three-fourth of the SMC has to consist of parents and 50% of women.righttoeducation.