BENGALURU: Schools from across the state – government, aided as well as unaided – are fuming over being asked to make an advance payment for their indent for textbooks. The schools should have placed their orders for textbooks by this time of the year, but that is not the case this year.
A communication from the Karnataka Textbook Society (KTBS) specifically asks the schools to pay 25 per cent of the total payment in advance for the indent they place for textbooks for the academic year 2020-2021. Without the payment, the indent will not be confirmed.
The circular also states that in case there is any faulty information with regard to excess or shortage of textbooks, then the onus for this lies on the respective school. Also, the deputy director of public instruction in the respective districts will be held responsible for anomalies in supplying textbooks to schools.
Schools, however, are unhappy about the mandatory payment and have approached the Primary Education Minister and the Karnataka Textbook Society.
Sources said the department decided to make the 25 per cent payment mandatory after many schools were found to order textbooks but never paid for it. However, Shashi Kumar, general secretary of the association, said that if schools were indeed not paying for the books, the department ought to have acted against the defaulters. Instead, KTBS is making blanket decisions while claiming that they do not have the authority to penalise those in the wrong, he added.
“Textbooks never reach schools on time. While they are to be delivered when schools start in June, they arrive as late as September. There are several other inconsistencies such as poor quality of the syllabus, which is not as per the NCF 2015 regulation or NCERT guidelines,” Kumar said and added that the department needs to pay attention to these aspects.
With the deadline for the submission of the indent getting closer - November 11 - Kumar said that if the private schools are pushed the wrong way, they will adopt the legal route for redressal.