CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday enacted a legislation in order to have a grip on recognised private schools in the State amid the principal opposition party demanding to add certain provisions to take stringent measures against schools converting classrooms into NEET coaching centres.
The Tamil Nadu Private Schools (Regulation) Bill 2018, passed through voice vote in the House in an elongated session after it was moved by School Education minister KA Sengottaiyan in the morning, tends to vest much powers with the State government.
The provisions in the bill enable the State government authorities to have the infrastructure and manpower of private schools at its disposal. “Every private school shall place its building, furniture and other infrastructure at the disposal of the board authorities for the conduct of any board examination and valuation of answer sheets, free of charge on specific requisition by the authorities concerned,” the bill stated.
Moreover, private schools should also oblige the government’s request for deputing its teachers on duty for the conduct of any board examinations and valuation of answer sheets on specific requisition.
Staff for census dutyIt also mandates the private schools to deploy its staff for carrying out the work of census or election or any survey, if required.
Another notable provision in the Tamil Nadu Private Schools (Regulation) Act, 2018, is to prevent the private schools from detaining poor performers from appearing for board examinations.It states, “No private school shall prevent any pupil on its roll from appearing for any board examinations on account of poor academic performance.”The government also is to tighten its hold on private schools regarding adherence to curriculum, syllabus, learning outcomes and guidelines prescribed for various stages of education in conformity with the respective board of affiliation.
Moreover, the bill enables the State government to appoint a special officer to look after the affairs of the schools in certain circumstances.
CBSE schools need nod
Explaining the features of the bill, Sengottaiyan said CBSE schools should renew the nod from the State government every three years. Former School Education minister and DMK MLA Thangam Thennarasu wanted the bill to have certain provisions to check private schools from converting regular class hours into coaching sessions for NEET.However, Sengottaiyan assured that stringent action, including revoking recognition, would be initiated against those schools that violate the norms of holding regular class hours on five days a week but there was nothing to restrain them from holding coaching in weekends.