Private educational institutions – which have become a flourishing business mainly for minting money rather than any commitment for making contributions for improving education section as such – and their affairs have been a source of concern as well as worry for the parents whose children are enrolled in private schools throughout the province.
According to the reports, Punjab Private Educational Institutions (Promotion and Regulation) was promulgated way back in 1984 and the same has been amended in 2017 and again recently in 2017 through amending legislations passed by the Provincial Assembly.
The Provincial School Education Department has published in the newspapers main provisions of the amended law for the attention of parents of the students of the private schools regarding annual increase in the tuition fee by these institutions.
On papers, these provisions are very impressive and appreciable reflecting the good intention of the provincial government to regulate the private educational institutions by bringing them within the given framework and bounding them to adhere the provisions thus providing much sought relief by the students’ parents.
But in practical terms, no private schools system/group is readily willing to adhere to the various provisions of the amending law and the managements of these institutions do not bother or care about the punitive measures therein as well.
On ground and in reality, they charge admission fee or security as per their sweet whim without caring that the amending law binds them not to charge more than equal to one month tuition fee. If the parents dare to object to charging more than one month tuition fee as admission fee or security, the management simply tells the parents to go to some other school.
Every chain of school system have their own published text books on which Punjab Textbook Board has no control or supervision whatsoever, uniforms can only be procured from their prescribed shops and not from open market.
No doubt the amending law provides penalty of fine for violation of any provision but if any parent dares to lodge a complaint with the Registering Authority then the private schools’ management mafia will make it impossible for the concerned parents to have their children admitted in any private school at all.
The Provincial School Education Department should better evolve mechanism of conducting raids on private schools without involving students’ parents in any manner to find out whether provisions of the amending law are being adhered to or not and more importantly improve the government schools working so that the parents take their children to the government schools instead of the private schools. Needless to say that the working of the government schools has deteriorated over the years so much that the parents are forced to take their children to the private schools despite their not willing to do so.
MEEM ZAY RIFAT