Srinagar: The High Court Monday asked government to “favorably” consider promotion of students from pre-nursery to Class 7 based on their assessment of periodical examinations, in view of the floods which ravaged the Kashmir Valley in September.
The directions by a division bench of Justices Muzaffar Hussain Attar and Dhiraj Singh Thakur followed submissions by senior advocate R A Jan that for these classes, the assessment of the students is made by taking periodical examinations.
In terms of the statue, Jan argued, there will be no difficulty to the educational institutions to promote the students on the basis of their performance in the tests conducted during academic year.
This will save academic career of the students who otherwise have to undergo extended academic session of almost 18 months, he said.
On the occasion, Additional Advocate General M A Chashoo sought time to convey the decision of the competent authority in this behalf.
“Respondent authorities may consider the submissions made at the Bar favorably,” the court said, posting the case for further consideration on November 25.
The court was hearing a PIL filed by some parents seeking restoration of hygiene in schools affected by the September floods.
In another direction, the court also issued a notice to Secretary School Education on an application filed by the Private Schools United Front (PSUF) seeking more or less the same relief.
The applicant body through advocate Nasir Qadri seeks directions to the government to promote the students upto Class 7 based on ‘continuous comprehensive evaluation’ and start the next session from November itself.
The PSUF, which claims to be a trust working for welfare of private schools, also seeks directions to the government to make the March session permanent “so that students won’t lose two precious years continuously.”
In another direction, the court asked principal of the Delhi Public School, Athwajan, Srinagar to file an undertaking before the Registrar Judicial this week that it will not charge tuition fee and bus fare from students for September and October.
The directions by the division bench followed submissions by amicus curie in the PIL, advocate G A Lone, that the school was not complying with directions by the court and parents have been asked to deposit the fee and fare.
However, advocate Jahangir Iqbal Ganie who represented the DPS rebutted the claims and submitted that no such demand has been made to the patents whose wards are studying in the institute.
Meanwhile, advocate Altaf Haqani, appearing for Srinagar British School, submitted that he is under instructions to make statement that the school will not charge tuition fee and bus fee for September and October. He submitted that in case any student has paid dues for these months, it will be re-adjusted for the months of November and December.
Malllison School, Tyndale Biscoe, Burn Hall, New Era and Presentation Convent have already made a statement before the court that they won’t charge the tuition fee and the bus fare for the two months.
In another direction, the court also granted week’s time to 59 other schools to file their response to the notice on charging the fee and the fare for the two months.
The court also allowed submissions by the amicus curie seeking time to submit further information about the schools that haven’t been issued notices so far.
“Such information be given during the course of the week, so as to enable the Registry to issue notices to those institutions,” the court said.
In a related PIL filed by advocate M Ashraf Wani, the court asked Secretary, School Education Department, Board of School Education (BOSE), Director School Education and Board of Professional Entrance Examinations (BOPEE) to respond by next date of hearing on November 25.
Among other demands, Wani has sought directions to the authorities to make the assessment of the loss to the schools and rebuild them on modern and scientific lines. He also demanded modernizing libraries in all colleges including those imparting technical education.
Wani has also sought directions to the authorities to take initiatives to uplift the standard of education. “Furthermore such steps shall be taken so that students are out of mental trauma caused by the floods,” he said.