‘Unjustified Hike’: FFRC cracks whip on pvt schools seeking 4-month fee
Seeks personal appearance of Principal over ‘violations’
By: Muhammad Adnan
Srinagar: The Fee Fixation and Regulation Committee (FFRC) Thursday came down heavily on private schools over violation of fee regulations, even as the panel sought personal appearance of the principal of a top private school in Srinagar. The FFRC barred the educational institutions from charging the annual fee for the four months.
The move comes a day after the Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School Srinagar asked parents of children studying in the school to pay the fee from November 2021 to February 2022 month.
“The current academic session has been extended to March 2023, the months from November onwards have been added in the ERP System for your child. You are required to pay the fees for the rest of the months accordingly,” a circular issued by Principal Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School reads.
The circular further read that the pending Annual Fees of four months which have not been charged from November 2021 to February 2022 (due to online classes), will reflect in the fees for the month of November 2022 “now that the academic year has been extended.”
While the school principal claimed to have issued the circular in accordance to government guidelines of charging Annual Fees on pro rata basis once school reopens and urged parents to “kindly clear the dues accordingly,” the circular came in for heavy criticism from parents who cried “loot in the name of education”.
Miffed by the circular, the parents approached the FFRC and sought action against the school.
The parents said the school did not charge Annual charges in 2019 but they paid the charges in 2021 and 2022.
“The annual fee charged is double than the routine tuition fees,” a parent said.
The parent said despite collecting annual charges from students the school did not conduct any activity for the kids.
“Earlier they used to send small chits to inform parents about the homework of students but now they don’t even afford to take print out of that small piece of paper and instead dictate the homework to kids or write it on black board,” the parent said.
The parents said the school teachers earlier used to provide hard copies of assignments to the kids but for the last two years they send an email or WhatsApp the soft copy and parents have to take the printout themselves.
“The school doesn’t afford to take a print out of an assignment sheet but charge annual fees from parents under the pretext of one or the other reasons,” the parent said.
The parents accused the school of resorting to illegal profiteering and fleecing the parents.
Notably, the FFRC in its notification issued earlier had directed the Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson school that the fresh entrants shall have to be saddled with responsibility of paying different Annual Fee for the first year of their admission in the School.
“In the subsequent years they will pay same Annual Fee which is being fixed and regulated in respect of students who are already studying in the School,” the FFRC notice reads
Meanwhile, in the fresh order issued by the Chairman FFRC Justice (retd) Muzaffar Hussain Attar, the school has been barred from charging the annual fees from the students for November 2021 to February 2022.
“The School Managements are restrained from charging and collecting Annual fee from students for the months of November 2021 to February 2022 till further orders,” the FFRC order reads.
The Committee has also summoned the Principal to report in the office of FFRC Srinagar on November 1 of 2022.