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Fee committee's revised report in next few days

Special Correspondent

It will be available on the Department's official website

CHENNAI: The Private Schools Fee Determination Committee headed by Justice K. Raviraja Pandian will make its revised report available in the next few days.

Confirming that the report of the revised fee structure for private schools across the State will be ready by June 12 or 13, sources in the School Education Department on Thursday said that the report would not be submitted to the government, but will be made available on the Department's official website.

The announcement, eagerly awaited by parents and private schools management, is expected to curb the practice of certain schools fleecing parents by collecting fees that are disproportionate to the facilities and services offered.

The initiative has seen several changes from May 2010 when the committee, then chaired by former judge of the Madras High Court Justice K. Govindarajan, stipulated the fees to be collected by as many as 10,934 private, self-financing schools across Tamil Nadu. Soon after, nearly 6,500 private schools raised objection to the fee determined by the committee and sought revision.

The committee said that a decision on revision could be taken only in subsequent academic year as the institutions had to be re-inspected and the committee required more details. A section of private schools moved the Madras High Court, which stayed the operation of the fee structure for private unaided schools in the State in September 2010.

In October, the State government announced that Justice K. Raviraja Pandian, former High Court judge, would head the Private Schools Fee Determination Committee.

Former Minister of School Education Thangam Thennarasu told the Assembly in November 2010 that the committee would complete the fee fixation exercise for those schools that appealed against the earlier order, in four months' time. The newly-determined fee was to come into effect in the academic year commencing June 2011.

Different sections, including parents and some political parties such as the PMK were insisting that the process be completed fast.

Soon after taking charge, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had announced that the government would not intervene in the fee issue unless it was required to.

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