Hyderabad: Many private budget schools witness 'lowest' admissions

Many private budget schools witness ‘lowest’ admissions
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Many private budget schools witness ‘lowest’ admissions

Highlights

  • More than 3,000 closed citing they were struggling to pay monthly rents
  • They are seeking financial help from State govt
  • Will soon discuss it with Education Minister Sabitha Indra Reddy

Hyderabad: With Covid-19 and the subsequent lockdowns hitting the education sector, many private budget schools have witnessed lowest number of admissions. It has slid to less than 50 to almost negligible in this academic year.

More than 3,000 private budget schools have been closed citing they were struggling to pay monthly rent for their infrastructure. These institutions are seeking financial help from the State government and will soon discuss the same with Education Minister Sabitha Indra Reddy.

These budget schools provide English-medium education at affordable charges but are finding it difficult to collect fees with Covid hitting parents' incomes to add to no new admissions and students flocking to government institutions.

Said Y Shekhar Rao, State president of Telangana Recognised School Managements Association (TRSMA): "Less than 10 new admissions combining pre-primary, upper primary classes have been given for the current academic year in these schools. Last year between 100-200 students were enrolled from nursery to class Many parents migrated to their hometowns with their children."

He remarked that by hook or by cook the budget schools have to stay afloat. "We are predicting around 2-5 per cent budget private schools will close this year. We might know the exact number once the schools reopen."

About 11,000 budget private schools are being run across the State. Fee for these schools ranges from 400 to 1,500. However, keeping the prevailing conditions in mind, they have not charged any fee, or a few have only taken tuition fee as parents come from organised sectors.

Speaking to The Hans India, Shabbir Ali, secretary, Telangana Teachers' Private Forum (TPTF), said around 500 budget private schools will close this year.

"The schools whose number of students has fallen to less than 100-200 and schools which are running on rent have more chances of shutting down. The percentage of such schools in the State is about 5-10. ``Many teachers are yet to get their last year's salary even though they have been conducting online classes".

While teachers said of 100 students, only 50 attend the online classes, making the school management feel helpless as they can't pay the rent with fewer students.

"Every private school rent is around Rs.40,000-50,000. They are unable to afford that now. Many owners wait for rent for months, but they cannot wait for years which builds pressure on schools to shut," said a private school teacher on the condition of anonymity.

A principal of a budget private school in Secunderabad favoured the State government to provide tax exemptions as the schools are shut.

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