BHUBANESWAR: With the Narendra Modi Government pushing for cashless payments with gusto, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has directed all its affiliated schools not to receive fees from students in cash.
CBSE’s Regional Officer for Odisha, West Bengal and Chhattisgarh Lakhan Lal Meena said all the 1000-plus schools in the three States were issued a circular on Tuesday to introduce fee collection from students either online or through non-cash mode from next quarter which starts in January, 2017.
Although schools in urban areas like Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Rourkela and Balasore have been collecting student fees through banks, majority in the outlying areas continue with cash receipt as a parallel payment method. This will have to go now.
Meena said parents can use banking instruments like cheque or online systems such as NEFT and RTGS to pay the fees. Schools have been asked to widely publicise the bank account details on their websites or through meetings with parents to go in for cashless payments.
‘’We do not give affiliation to any school unless they provide the bank account details of the Trust or Society which runs the institution. Now, schools will have to share the same with students and their parents,’’ he added.
In fact, a number of schools of the Capital City has already taken to cashless receipt of student fees. Academic Coordinator of DAV Public School, Chandrasekhapur Arundhati Bhattacharya said the school receives student fees either online or through bank. ‘’The bank account details of the school are hosted on our website. In a way, we are already in the cashless transaction mode,’’ she said.
Another prominent school, SAI International School has also switched to cashless receipt of fees three months back. GM (PR) Sarat Kar said cash receipt has been completely stopped at the school counters.
The Central board has also directed its affiliated schools to disburse salary to staff through bank transfers and make all payments for various services, procurements, wages to contractual workers and other transactions in non-cash mode. Schools have been advised to interact with parents during parent-teacher meeting to spread the word about benefits of non-cash transactions.
According to State Bank of India (SBI), which provides payment gateway for online transactions, a number of educational institutions of the State including schools has already adopted the non-cash transaction system.
DGM (ACP) of SBI Gouranga Charan Behera said at least 300 educational institutions - starting from IIT to State universities and schools - have been collecting fees online through the SBI gateway.