RTE Act faces significant implementation challenges: Report

New Delhi, Mar 11 (ENA)  Despite being enacted in 2009, the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education faces significant implementation challenges. Overcoming these implementation challenges is essential for the program to be effective. Understanding and devising solutions to address these challenges deserve attention from practitioners and researchers alike, said a survey report.

The report titled, State of the Nation: RTE Section 12(1)(c) is a collaborative effort of the RTE Resource Centre at IIM Ahmedabad, Central Square Foundation, Accountability Initiative (Centre for Policy Research) and Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy.

“The RTE Act mandates that private unaided schools keep aside 25 per cent of their entry level seats for children belonging to economically weaker sections and disadvantaged categories. The clause represents an instrument to increase equity in educational opportunities and create a more integrated and inclusive schooling system,” the Executive Summary of the report which was released recently stated.

The mandate currently has the potential to impact 1.6 crore children from EWS and DG categories in the next eight years.

However, in the six years since its introduction, the mandate’s implementation has experienced several roadblocks.   According to the report private schools across the country fill only 15 per cent of the nearly 2.29 million seats available for students from economically weaker sections.

Further, in 2014-15, out of the total seats available, just 346,000 seats were filled, a slight improvement from the 320,000 seats of the available 2.18 million in the previous year.

The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act or Right to Education Act (RTE), makes education a fundamental right and stipulates free and compulsory education for children between 6 and 14 in India under Article 21A of the Indian Constitution.

The idea behind this act is to have an inclusive education system and bring up a more egalitarian society. This Act allows children from diverse socio-economic segments to look beyond their doors and be a part of good quality education.

The main provisions of RTE are: free elementary education in neighborhood government schools; free elementary education for 25 per cent of entering students in private schools and specified category schools; provisions for enabling admission to schools – no capitation fees or interviews; provisions for enabling admission for older children and transfers; provisions for recognized, full-time schools; provisions for norms and standards for a school; provisions for school facilities and full-time school; provisions for teacher-pupil ratios and special teachers; provisions for process and content of education; provisions for role of schools and management committees. (ENA Bureau)

Source : Education News Agency ( INDIA)

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