School Recognition Criteria
Section 19 of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009 (RTE Act) lays down the criteria for recognition of private schools. For schools established before the commencement of the Act, a maximum time period of three years has been set for schools to conform to these regulations, failing which the recognition shall be withdrawn.
These criteria include all weather school buildings, one-classroom-one-teacher, Head Teacher cum Office room; adequate sized library with a specific number of books, toilets of specific dimensions, drinking water facilities, playground, fencing and boundary walls.
1. Path-breaking rules under the Right to Education Act, in Gujarat- Parth J Shah, Centre for Civil Society
“In recent weeks, Gujarat notified its Rules for the implementation of the Right to Education Act (RTE) 2009. It has introduced some of the most innovative ideas for recognition of existing private unaided schools. The Committee in charge of drafting the Rules in Gujarat, which was headed by the former Chief Secretary Mr.Sudhir Mankad, has broken new ground in understanding the policy issues faced in education in India today”
2. How the RTE can make the Budget performing Schools extinct - Kartik Misra, Centre for Civil Society
If budget private schools were to adhere to all the infrastructural norms under the RTE, the projected increase in the fee charged would be as follows
- The average increase in fee charged if RTE norms were followed in the Chauhan Bangar (urban), Karawal Nagar (peri-urban) and Libaspur (rural) areas of Delhi surveyed was 394.17%, 533.62% and 352.49% respectively, using the most conservative estimates costs based on government determined circle rates for property and construction costs. The corresponding figures at market rates were 775.95%, 1044.06% and 2458.79% respectively.
- The change in absolute terms corresponds to fee increases from 370 INR, 302 INR and 295 INR in the three areas is INR 1458.43, INR 1611.53 and INR 1039.85 respectively using the most conservative estimates. The corresponding figures at market rates are 2871.02 INR, 3153.06 INR and 7253.43 INR respectively.
3. RTE Infrastructure Lacks in Almost 95% of Schools - One India Education, 10 April 2012
Since two years after Right To Education (RTE) Act came into force, more than 95% of schools across India still don't comply with RTE standards for Infrastructure. A review of the legislation's implementation by the Right To Education Forum, a civil society collective comprising around 10,000 NGO's and three networks, has shown that while some progress has been made in implementing the act, it is far from adequate.
4. Making lemonade from lemons – The RTE edition - Livemint, 02 May 2012
Economist Bibek Debroy had succinctly summarized his opposition to RTE in The Indian Express. “58% of enrolment in urban India is in private schools and the figure is 32% in rural India...The RTE imposes high compliance costs on budget private schools and drives them out. It thus hinders, rather than furthers, the cause of school education”. Indeed, most schools in the country are not RTE-compliant as of now (simply in terms of infrastructure, not admission policies).
5. RTE report reveals a bleak picture - The Times of India, 09 April 2012
In terms of quality, the report reveals that the school infrastructure does not meet the norms of RTE. Some of the highlights include two out of five schools lack functional toilets; one in 10 schools lack drinking water facilities; 40% schools lack a separate toilet for girls; 60% schools are without electricity; schools without libraries have declined from 37.5% in 2010 to 28.6% in 2011; one in every five schools has a computer; instruction in mother tongue is not available especially in tribal and border districts; 99.68% of students experience punishment of some sort; 6.89 lakh sanctioned teacher posts are vacant and 6.7 lakh teachers are not trained.