In an important ruling, the Gujarat High Court has held that newly opened schools in the state must give admission to underprivileged students under the 25 per cent quota envisaged under the Right to Education (RTE) Act. The court has also directed the government to contemplate action against educational institutions that flout the RTE law that came to force in 2009.
There are some 300 new schools that were given approval to start academic activity from 2017. However, their details had not been uploaded in the list of schools, thus excluding them from the RTE admission. The court issued direction following a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by petitioner Sandip Munjyasara raising issue of newly opened schools being not mentioned on the online portal meant for RTE admissions. He filed the plea in court on November 22, 2017. He stated before the court that the state government had subtly skipped mentioning new schools on the web portal and this could facilitate the new schools to not perform their mandatory responsibility to give admission to the students from economically marginalized families.
He further submitted that all schools, irrespective of old or new, should grant admission to the poor students under the 25 per cent quota. However, authorities’ failure to upload the relevant details benefitted the schools. “The court has issued an important judgment regarding the new schools and they should not skip the admission process under the RTE act,” said Munjyasara. He further added that earlier, he had sought details of the newly approved schools from the government but it had not provided to him. “During the hearing, it came to light that there were some 300 new schools. Students were deprived of getting admission to these schools,” he said.
Source: Ahmedabad Mirror