HYDERABAD: While there have been a din of protest against exorbitant fees charged by private corporate schools, not much has been spoken about the price for textbooks and notebooks spirals, that a parent is mandated to buy only from the school itself, which cost a bomb. With the start of new academic year, a parent here paid `10,000 and `13,000 for textbooks meant for a class 1 and class 5 student respectively at a Begumpet school.
However, no power or pressure seems to have any effect on powerful lobby of corporate and international schools in TS which charge a bomb for textbooks and notebooks that does not come with any logic often leaving parents flabbergasted at the money they have to shell out.
The two main reasons why corporate and international schools charge exorbitant prices are the pricey textbooks published by private publishers and illogically priced notebooks which come with the school’s name and emblem.
“Text books are priced higher than the Maximum Retail Price (MRP) and are sold as a package along with notebooks that are overpriced. In one of the schools a set of six textbooks along with 10 notebooks was sold for `2,900 per student.
When checked, MRP of six textbooks came up to only `637, which means remaining ten notebooks were for `226 per piece. When parents ask schools reason behind such pricing, they did not give any explanations,” Ashish Naredi of Hyderabad Schools Parents Association said.
“We have been raising the issue of high fees charged for textbooks also along with the issue of exorbitant fees being charged by private schools. Many schools charge fees for textbooks are along with school fees itself and no break up is given,” he added.
Though there have been protests against exorbitant school fees which also includes the fees charged for books, the corporate and international schools seem to not bother about the concerns raised as just around three to four such schools have been participating in the School Fee Regulatory Committee, third round of which was held on Thursday.
While small and medium-level private schools have at least promised to sell textbooks at MRP, there is no word from the corporate schools on the issue.
“Most of medium-level private schools charge around `2,000 or a little above that for books. In meetings of Schools Fee Regulatory Committee we committed that we will ensure books are sold for MRP but what about corporate and international schools? They did not even come for the meetings. They are the ones who charge exorbitant prices for books,” TS Recognised Schools Management Association spokesperson, Chintala Ramchander says.