BENGALURU: The Kannada Development Authority (KDA) has recommended that the government direct officials to cancel the recognition of SLS International Gurukula School which had imposed a fine on its students for speaking in Kannada. In a letter written to primary and secondary education minister S Suresh Kumar, KDA chairman T S Nagabharana said he had visited the school at Channasandra, along with officials and educationist PV Niranjanaradhya to investigate allegations about the school. They found the allegations to be true and also unearthed other violations.
The school had sent a letter to parents saying that their children would be fine Rs 50 if they spoke in Kannada at the first instance and Rs 100 if they were caught again. The principal who admitted to issuing such a letter, tendered an unconditional apology and assured that the mistake would not be repeated. Though the school teaches Kannada as a second language under the Kannada Learning Rules 2015 and 2017, levying a penalty for speaking Kannada is an offence as it amounts to cheating the State’s language.
The delegation also noted that the school did not set aside the required number of hours for Kannada classes in its time table, nor did it appoint the required number of Kannada teachers,violating the Kannada Learning Rules.Another violation was that most of the teaching staff belong to neighbouring states. Unqualified candidates too were hired as teaching staff, the delegates said.
It also found that there was an atmosphere of fear in the school, as children were forced to go out of school for unwanted reasons, and harassed in the name of discipline. The school also did not display various details in front of the building violating RTE provisions.