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Bill to regulate school fees

Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: The State government would introduce the Unaided Private Schools Regulation Bill in the current session, School Education Minster Thangam Thennarasu told the Assembly on Tuesday.

Two clauses

The legislation would have two important clauses, for the constitution of a State-level fee fixation committee, and penal action, he said, replying to the debate on a call attention notice.

Responding to concerns expressed by members about the collection of excess fee in government aided and private schools, the Minister asserted that the government would not remain a mute spectator.

Explaining the rationale behind the legislation, he said that under the existing legal framework, the government cannot regulate fees in private schools.

The previous (All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam) government had constituted a committee, headed by S.V. Chittibabu, to study the levy of fees in schools (in the matriculation stream).

But the government could take the committee’s recommendations only as advisories in view of the Supreme Court order in the T.M.A. Pai case.

Pointing out that the court later gave orders in the Islamic Academy and Inamdar cases, the Minister said what the government could do now was to constitute a fee fixation committee.

Complaints

Complaints of collection of excess fee were received in respect of 116 schools, of which 69 belonged to the matriculation stream. Notices had been issued to them.

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