SRINAGAR: J&K Government’s school fee fixation committee has given a nod to the enhancement of fee structure of private educational institutions by eight percent.
The order (IOG-FFC OF 2017), issued on October 20, will be effective from upcoming school session and will remain valid for three years. The decision of the increase in school fee comes after the J&K High Court direction that asked government to frame a policy regarding annual fee enhancement.
Administrative officer of the Committee for Fixation of Fee Structure of Private Educational Institutions of J&K, Nazir ul Hassan, told Kashmir Reader that the fee panel decision came after government approached the committee.
According to Hassan, the hike order was issued after considering similar policies in states like Punjab.
“Private schools of other states allow increase in the school fee annually but our committee made it valid for three years,” Hassan said. By the order, the schools can raise their fees by eight percent and the structure can not be changed for the next three years.
Any disputes over the recommendations can be filed with the committee, which shall look into them to ascertain whether any change in fee structure was required, he added. “If the committee believes the enhancement meets certain criteria such as rate of inflation, etcetera, (such) change won’t be allowed because schools are non-profit institutions.”
The committee previously had failed to establish a fee structure for private schools in Jammu and Kashmir. However, Nazir said that the new order was issued to provide relief to both schools and parents.
In 2014, a public interest litigation (PIL) was filed by a parents’ body seeking a direction that schools should not charge any fees for the months of September and October of the year as devastating floods had hit Kashmir. The High Court later issued an order on 1 June 2015 directing all private schools not charge fee for those months.
The High Court had also issued direction to private schools to approach state fee fixation committee for any kind of enhancement in fee structure and collection.