Several schools in Karnataka including those affiliated with the CBSE, ICSE and international boards will stage a protest march starting from the City Railway Station to Freedom Park in Bengaluru on Tuesday, February 23, 2021 to voice their dissent against the 30 percent school fee reduction mandated by the state government.
The protest has been called by various school associations including the Management of Independent CBSE Schools Association, Karnataka ICSE Schools Association, Association of Management of Primary and Secondary Schools of Karnataka, and Karnataka Unaided Schools Management Association, to name a few.
D Shashi Kumar, secretary, Association of Managements of Primary and Secondary Schools in Karnataka (KAMS) told EducationWorld, “There has been a long-standing dispute not only with fees but with other matters as well. To mark this agitation, we will be coming on the road with more than 30,000 teaching and non-teaching staff, who will be part of this protest. It is a pathetic situation in the Karnataka education system – the education minister has failed to deliver an honest, justified and unbiased stand that has caused a huge dispute.”
“The whole protest is against the recent spate of orders that the government has issued for private and unaided schools,” says Mansoor Ali Khan, General Secretary, Management of Independent CBSE Schools Association. “Some of our concerns include the arbitrary 30 percent fee reduction without taking the school associations or the managements into confidence, the continuous harassment by government and officials of private unaided schools, witholding of RTE reimbursements as well as changing the fire safety rules for existing schools, but the main protest is on fees issue.”
Gayathri Devi, member of the newly-formed Karnataka Private Schools Managements Teaching and Non-Teaching Staff Coordination Committee says, “We want the government to hear the voices of the teachers. Online classes will not be held tomorrow. Everything will come to a standstill in terms of teaching in the state and unfortunately, all the teachers will be on the road expressing their concerns.”
However, several schools have decided to hold compensatory classes on Saturday (February 27) so that the protest doesn’t hamper the students’ academics.
Meanwhile, several parents association across the state have said they would go on a counter-strike if the school fee order is revoked.
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