Private educational institutions trying to create monopoly, allege legislators  

Jammu: Legislators cutting across party lines on Tuesday slammed the private educational institutions for trying to create a situation that suits them only.

The members raised their concern over the ‘increasing monopoly’ of private institutions and said the people involved in the sector were ‘sucking blood’ of the parents under the garb of providing education to the students.

Speaking during the discussion on grants for education department in the Legislative Assembly, the legislators sought governments intervention in ending the ‘mess’.

“Private schools are not only running the schools like empires but have turned vampires by sucking the blood of parents under the garb of imparting education to their children,” said NC MLA from Budgam, Aga Rahulla.

He said the private schools were over charging from parents under different heads which remains unchecked by the government.

“Monopoly of private schools is increasing day by day and has turned their institutions into business houses. Government should take some steps to save the society from these vampires,” Rahulla told the House.

He further said the society was witnessing menace of coaching centers which also engage in minting money from the parents.

“Earlier the concept of private coaching was to give education with concentration but that concept of giving education has been marred by the people involved in this system. Now we see more enrollments of students in coaching centres than in classrooms of a school and use loudspeakers to teach students,” Rahulla said.

“The teachers in coaching centres fail to do justice with the students but mint money from the students,” he said.

The NC MLA further asked the government to shift focus on making society more educated than literate.

“Literacy rate of our state is increasing but we have not understood prerogative of education. We are after merit but question is whether we can say that our society is educated or not,” Rahulla said.

Congress leader Aijaz Khan while speaking during the debate on grants said the private education sector has become an industry to fleece the parents. “There is no check from the government and private schools don’t abide by the government rules,” he said.

He also raised his concern over ‘weak research’ in universities. “Educational research is weak in universities. Quality education needs to be made the focal point,” he said.

Ruling PDP MLA from Baramulla Javed Hassan Beig said earlier private schools used to operate with a mission to impart education which has taken a back seat in the contemporary times.

“They have started commercialization of the sector. They have increased the burden on the tender shoulders of the school children by prescribing different books to them. It has taken a toll on the health of small kids in private schools,” Beig lamented.

He said the education system in private schools was anti-students which has claimed the childhood of the students. “Children of private schools have lost their childhood,” he said,

Beig meanwhile complemented the education minister for providing a ‘healing touch’ to schools saying he (minister) was given the charges of the department when schools were yet to come out of the turmoil.

“Also, he (minister) put in his efforts to reopen schools after the campus unrest in 2017. He played a pivotal role to remove the trust deficit,” he said.

The PDP leader also raised concern over stagnation of the officials in the education department and said teachers mostly get promoted to the level of ZEO.

“Government should keep some incentives for subject specific teachers which will help to overcome the dearth of staff in high and higher secondary schools,” he said.

Participating in the discussions, senior NC leader Mian Altaf said the committees constituted for regulation of private schools was not functioning properly.

“Besides this, department has not referred all the vacancies of Ganderbal district to the recruiting agency which should be done at an earliest,” Mian Altaf said.

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