With parents of children in private unaided schools of Goa deciding to take recourse to legal action to enforce the rules applicable to such schools as per the Goa School education act 1984, the Goa government appears to have woken up to the reality facing it and has now belatedly appointed a committee to introspect the grievances of parents on the issue of fee hikes in private recognised unaided schools in the state of Goa.
The panel is expected to hear the members of the private unaided school managements, the unaided school parents association of aggrieved parents, other people in the education field and subsequently submit its report to the government within a period of one month
The members of the panel are former education director Suman Pednekar who heads the committee, Surendra Sirsat ( retired principal of Kushe Higher secondary school Mapusa, C K Mathew ( retired Principal Holy trinity HSSS Benaulim ) D P Pednekar ( retired principal of Naik Higher secondary school Curchorem) and Avinash Nasnodkar ( AEO - legal, Education Department)
Among other things the committee is expected to deliberate on matters such as : the scope of references of the committee with whether in terms of section 13 of the Goa school education act 1984, the hike of fees by private unaided schools is necessary to implement sixth pay commission scales to their staff thereby bringing them on par with the employees of the corresponding status in schools run by the government.
The other aspect to be analysed by the panel is whether the exorbitant hike of fees by the unaided schools is justified with respect to providing better infrastructure facilities and quality education for better development of the child as claimed by such schools
Transparency in accounts of unaided schools is another bone of contention expressed by the aggrieved parents and this issue is bound to invite suggestions from the panel to resolve it with more transparency in audited accounts.
The panel may also explore the possibility of making further provisions with regard to the fee structure in unaided schools in Goa, in the Goa school education act and rules and make recommendations accordingly.