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School tries to get out of RTE, fails

DNBAN74526 | 4/30/2014 | Author : dna correspondent | WC :271 | Education & Careers

Sri Vani Edu Centre's ploy of claiming to be a linguistic minority
institute fails in high court

Bangalore: A city school's attempt to wriggle out of the Right to Education (RTE) Act's purview by employing the linguistic-minority tactic came a cropper with Karnataka high court pooh-poohing its contention.
The RTE Act mandates that all government schools and government-aided schools set aside 25% of their seats for children from poor families in the neighbourhood. Only private schools that are certified as linguistic minority institutes are exempted from the Act.
Rajajinagar-based Sri Vani Education Centre had obtained an order from a single-judge bench, which held that the institute is a linguistic minority institute, therefore exempted from the RTE. The high court on Tuesday set aside this order and asked the school to admit students in accordance with the Act.
Past year, the school had given admission to students as per the Act, but this year, it asked them to cough up the full fees of Rs35,000. The students challenged this decision in the court, where the school contended that it's a linguistic minority institute, and therefore not compelled to follow the RTE even though a government circular required it to follow the Act. During the hearing on April 8, Justice Ananda Byrareddy decided in favour of the school and ordered a stay on the government circular.
This decision was challenged. When the case came up for hearing on Tuesday, the bench comprising Chief Justice DH Waghela and Justice BV Nagarathna noted that the school did not have a certificate from the competent authority, identifying it as a linguistic minority institute. On these grounds, the HC set aside the April 8 order and instructed the school to follow the RTE Act.

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