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Steep hike in schools fees

Steep hike in schools fees
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Steep Hike In Schools Fees. A steep hike in the school fee has left several parents distraught this academic year.

This year the managements of many schools have increased the fee by 40%

A steep hike in the school fee has left several parents distraught this academic year. Although various committees have been formed to look into the issue, no concrete decision was taken on fee fixation for private schools.

Taking a cue from the previous government’s inaction to control the school fee issue, the private schools in the city have increased their fee this year also. This year there has been a whopping 40 per cent increase in fees being collected by schools across the city.

Commenting on it, S Srinivas Reddy, President, Recognised Private Schools Management Association, says, “About 10 to 15 per cent hike in fee is reasonable due to inflation; increasing the fee by 30 to 40 per cent is excessive. According to GO MS 91, released in 2010, schools can go in for an annual hike of 10 to 15 per cent. Later, the GO was dismissed by the High Court. When Right to Education came into existence, the government again released the same GO with a slight change -- the GO number was changed to 42! The government is now insisting on continuing the same GO, but some international and corporate schools are collecting exorbitant fees which are against the rules.”

With the increase in the fee, parents from middle and lower income groups are now being forced to explore new options. TVV Vijay, a parent whose children are studying in Gowtham Model School says that to meet the additional burden he is thinking of availing study loans as changing schools is not an easy task as he has to first identify a suitable school with similar standards that charges a lesser fee.

There are about 6,000 schools in Hyderabad; an analysis of fees in top-notch international schools and state schools reveals that international schools charge anywhere between 1.5 lakh to four lakh per annum which is equivalent to the fee of B-Schools and engineering courses. Other schools like Jain Public School, St Andrews and Meridian School charge anywhere between Rs 35,000 and Rs 90,000 per annum. State schools like Narayana Olympiad, Sri Chaitanaya Techno Schools are charging Rs 30,000 to 40,000 annually.

While there are some top rung schools that charge a bomb, they compensate by providing high-end facilities to their students. Right from AC buses and classrooms, menus designed by nutritionists for the children, laptops, etc., the schools provide all amenities and luxuries under one roof. These schools are favoured by parents for whom money is not a limiting factor and these are in the minority. However, a large section of parents are affected by this steep fee hike.

Archana V, a middle-income parent, says, “Before a decision is taken on fee hike, it should be discussed with parents, but this is not happening.”

Another parent, Harish Kumar, laments that its official’s apathy that is taking a toll on their pockets. He says, “I shifted my children from a top rung school to a state school as they were charging an exorbitant fee. These schools are now competing with the corporate schools. They have increased school fees additionally by Rs, 3,000. Had the government intervened and looked into the matter, this wouldn’t have happened.”

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