The Karnataka Unaided Schools Managements’ Association (KUSMA) is now in a spot with its legal adviser and Supreme Court advocate K V Dhananjay asking the schools to get registered anew under Right to Education (RTE) Act to show compliance.
Dhananjay has replied to KUSMA’s 21 questions on RTE mainly revolving around the mandate for schools to get separately registered under the RTE Act before October 31 or pay a hefty fine, which may even include derecognition.
For the query that schools have already registered under the Karnataka Education Act (KEA) 1983, Dhananjay said, “The KEA Act is a law that is distinct and separate from the RTE Act, 2009. As such, recognition under the RTE Act is to be separately obtained.”
He added that compliance with one law does not mean compliance with another law.
“There is of course some conflict between the KEA
Act and the RTE Act. But even if that conflict is somehow resolved, the two laws would still speak very different languages and impose very different requirements, such as the 25 per cent reservation in the RTE Act,” Dhananjay explained.
On the validity of the October 31 deadline, Dhananjay said, “It appears to me that the government has frequently extended the deadline and cumulatively, not less than two months of opportunity has been granted. As such, a deadline is generally valid and under these circumstances, the deadline of October 31 appears to be reasonable.”
He had told KUSMA that any action from schools that is against the rules and provisions of the RTE would invite massive penalties, including derecognition.
However, he said that schools are free to take up whatever issues they have even after registration.
KUSMA secretary A Mariyappa said that the association, which represents nearly 1,800 unaided schools in the state, was confused.
“KUSMA will have its executive committee meeting on Thursday to take a final call on the issue of getting registered under the RTE Act,” he said.