The Private Schools’ Association of J&K (PSAJK) along with Parents Association of Privately Administered Schools (PAPAS), trade bodies and representatives of tourism, transporters and other sectors have decided to waive off fees for students whose family income has been impacted severely by the Covid-19 lockdown.
Commenting on the decision to waive off fees, PSAJK president, G N Var said, “We are all together in it. The only way by which we can come out stronger from these trying circumstances is when we help each other.” He also added, “On one hand we have to consider the families who have experienced almost zero income during this lockdown period and on the other hand we have to take care of thousands of employees of private schools. Thankfully together with all the stakeholders we have managed to create a balance between the two.”
The Association said that the families who had no income during this period will be offered upto 100 percent fee waiver. Var said, “Those students whose family income has become zero don’t need to worry about any extra burden. However the students whose parents are government employees, traders in medicine, grocery or doing such jobs which ensured direct or indirect income, will have to pay full fee.”
The Association had classified the private schools into two groups based on the fee slab of Rs 800 per month. Var added, “Schools with fee slab of Rs 800 or lower per month will give upto 50 percent discount to deserving students. They are economy schools and these calculations have been made considering various factors. The schools where fee is above Rs 800 will provide upto 100 percent fee waiver to deserving students.”
To ensure the benefit reaches to every deserving student, it will be approved after proper verification by concerned school management and a team of PSAJK. All those students whose parents fall in the category of such low or no income should submit an application for fee waiver with their respective schools and or at PSAJK office by or before July 7, 2020. Var said that the applications will be “cleared in expedited mode after verification.”
For families whose income remained non-affected during the lockdown period will have to clear all their dues immediately. “For the last few years our education sector has been highly stressed. Every year or alternate years schools are being closed for extended periods of time. Around 250 private schools have been closed as they became financially unviable. Even now a number of budget schools are on the brink of closure. There is an uncertainty regarding opening of schools this year. At this juncture it is imperative upon both the government and public to come forward and rescue these schools for greater good of the society,” said Var.
The Association said that the government has many schemes to help students of government schools but none are for private schools. Hence, regarding the J&K private schools fees waiver, Var said, “Be it mid-day meal scheme or free uniform for students everything is for poor students in government schools. Government should treat all students equally be it in private or government schools. Recently government has taken many steps to help the education sector, which we appreciate. Now the next step by government should be to help poor students of private schools and in some cases school management and teachers.”
Source: Ziraat TimesNews, States