The enactment of the Right of Children to free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act 2009 marks a historic moment for the children of India. The landmark and ground-breaking legislation, Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 has triggered elementary education to move towards its long term goals and making the nation to provide all necessary steps to ensure all children complete their elementary education.
The Constitution (Eighty-sixth Amendment) Act, 2002 inserted Article 21-A in the Constitution of India to provide free and compulsory education of all children in the age group of six to fourteen years as a Fundamental Right in such a manner as the State may, by law, determine. The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009, which represents the consequential legislation envisaged under Article 21-A, means that every child has a right to full time elementary education of satisfactory and equitable quality in a formal school which satisfies certain essential norms and standards.
The RTE Act provides for the:
Right of children to free and compulsory education till completion of elementary education in a neighbor-hood school.
It clarifies that ‘compulsory education’ means obligation of the appropriate government to provide free elementary education and ensure compulsory admission, attendance and completion of elementary education to every child in the six to fourteen age group. ‘Free’ means that no child shall be liable to pay any kind of fee or charges or expenses which may prevent him or her from pursuing and completing elementary education.
It makes provisions for a non-admitted child to be admitted to an age appropriate class.
It specifies the duties and responsibilities of appropriate Governments, local authority and parents in providing free and compulsory education, and sharing of financial and other responsibilities between the Central and State Governments.
The RTE Act mandates that “[e]very child of the age of six to fourteen years shall have a right to free and compulsory education in a neighbourhood school till completion of elementary education.” In accordance with Section 12(1) of the Act, all specified category or private schools must reserve 25% of their seats for children belonging to disadvantaged and weaker section from the neighbourhood and provide them admission from Class I / Pre School onwards.
In this connection RTE Act 2009 provides a platform to reach the unreached, with specific provisions for disadvantaged groups and weaker sections. The detailed table is given below:
A “child belonging to disadvantaged groups” refers to “a child belonging to the Scheduled Caste, the Scheduled Tribe, the socially and educationally backward class or such other group having disadvantage owing to social, cultural, economical, geographical, linguistic, gender or such other fact, as may be specified by the appropriate Government, by notification” (RTE Act, 2009, Section 2, Clause (d)).
In addition to the definition given in RTE Act.
A child belonging to “weaker section” refers to “a child belonging to such parent or guardian whose annual income is lower than the minimum limit specified by the appropriate Government, by notification” (RTE Act, 2009, Section 2, Clause (e)).
As per the sub-section (1) of section 12 of the Act, the unaided private schools shall admit children under RTE 25% reservation in the neighbourhood norms specified in the RTE Act 2009 section 6 (viz) the area of limits of neighbourhood within which a school shall be established by the State Government:
(a)a distance of one kilometer in respect of children in classes I to V (Primary)
(b)a distance of three kilometers in respect of children in classes VI to VIII.(Upper Primary)
As per RTE rules rule 8(3) specifies that.. “Provided that the school may, for the purpose of filling up the requisite percentage of seats for children referred to in clause (c) of sub section (1) of section 12 extend these areas or limits with the prior approval of the State Government”.
Procedure for admission:
The Education department officially announce the issue of application for RTE 25% reservation through notice boards, websites, dailies, local newspapers and reliable media. The application forms can be received free of cost and the filled in applications can be submitted in the following government offices viz., Chief Educational office, Additional Chief Education Office (SSA), District Educational Offices, District Elementary Educational Office, Inspector of Matriculation office & Assistant Elementary Educational Offices. The selection has been made by the lot system in front of the parents .
The notice board of the schools displays the names of children who have gained admission under this ACT. This acts as an eye opener to others who visit the schools.
The Government has taken steps for Implementation of 25% reservation for admission to children belonging to disadvantaged group/weaker section in private non-minority un-aided schools. Under RTE Act, 2009 and vide G. O.No.(Ms)No.59 School Education (PL.2) Department Dated: 12.05.2014, which is an amendment to GO.(Ms)No.60, School Education (X2) Department, dated 01.04.2013.
The plan of action as per the order is as follows.
Every School shall prepare the details of Entry level class and intake capacity
2nd April of every year
The25% of intake as per notification No.G.O.Ms.No.9 school Education (C2) department dated 18.01.2011 to be entered in a separate register, and submit to the district committee prescribed in Form I
2nd April of every year
This 25% of intake seats shall be displayed at the school notice board
2nd April of every year
Application Form for admission of children under 25% reservation in private schools except unaided minority unaided schools, shall be as prescribed in Form – II
Every private school except un-aided minority school shall notify calling for application forms under 25% reservation
2nd May of every year
Date of issue of Application forms
3rd May to 18th May of every year
Submission of filled in application forms
By 5.00 pm on or before 18th May every year
The parents shall receive a registration slip from school while submitting application form as prescribed in form-III
Names of eligible applicants shall be displayed. Names of ineligible applicants shall also be displayed separately with reason of rejection
By 5.00 pm on 20th May of every year
If the eligible applicants are more than 25% of intake, random selection method shall be applied with numbered tokens of eligible applicants. Parents who are interested may participate in the random selection
At 10.30 am, of 23rd May of every year
Names of selected applicants with application number shall be displayed immediately in the notice board with a waiting list of 10% out of the 25%
2.00 P.M on 23rd May of every year
The schools shall submit return statement to the concerned district level authority after completion of admission process as prescribed in Form-IV
On or before 29th May ssof every year
For the current year the state nodal officer to RTE and Director of Matriculation schools and State Nodal officer for Right to Education has issued a circular vide R.C.No:1485/A1/2016, Dated: 30.03.2016 with the following instructions & time schedule.
The State nodal officer for RTE has issued detailed instruction for the verification of the Reimbursement claim by the private unaided schools for the year 2016-17. According to this guidelines a committee comprising of Higher Secondary Head Master, an Assistant Elementary Educational Officer, a Block Resource Teacher Educator and a Clerical Staff checks the details of admission procedure through verification of the following records maintained in the concerned schools.
Application Issued Register
Children Selected Register
Admission Register in the appropriate entry level class
Reimbursement Claimed Register.
The committee members verify all the above said records and also met the parents to enquire about the procedure of selection and fees reimbursement details under RTE 25% reservation. The committee also looks into the Special Children (IE) admission as per norms. If the committee certifies that all the above said procedures are correct, the fund for reimbursement is released by the state office through ECS to the school account directly as per rule 9(4 & 5) of the Right of the Tamil Nadu Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Rules, 2011. The district level officials of the Directorate ensure that the UC (Utilization Certificate) is duly signed and submitted in time.
RTE REIMBURSEMENT TO PRIVATE UNAIDED SCHOOLS
The Children eligible for 25% reservation are the weaker section (the parents whose annual income is below 2 lakhs) and the disadvantaged group (the wards of HIV affected parents, Scavengers, SC, ST, OBC and disabled). In Tamil Nadu, the beneficiaries for the year 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 is shown in the table below.
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act -2009
aims that no child is left without attending the school. As per the section 12(1)(C) of The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, the government has taken initiatives and instructed the non-minority unaided school to admit 25% of the children from weaker section and disadvantaged groups. From the year 2013 to 2017 4,19,799 children belonging to weaker section and disadvantaged group have been admitted in private unaided schools. The State Government has reimbursed an amount of Rs. 3963841460 to the unaided private schools as tuition fee.
The Right of Children to free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009
Sec (12) (1) C
Year wise details of amount reimbursed to Private unaided Schools and no. of children benefitted under 25% reservation
No. of Schools received Fee Reimbursement against 25% admission
No. of Children for whom Reimbursement made to Private Schools
Total Amount actually reimbursed to schools (In Rs.)
1789160439 ( The balance amount will also be reimbursed to schools in due course of time)
Provision of RTE Act, 2009
Orders/Instructions issued by the Government and Departments
No detention of children till the completion of Elementary Education
G.O. (Ms) No.189
No child is required to pass any Board Examination till the completion of Elementary Education.
Accordingly Director of School Education, Director of Elementary Education and the Director of Matriculation Schools issued suitable instructions to the schools through their inspecting officers indicating the basic responsibilities of the schools.
Age appropriate admission. Compulsory Admission, Attendance and completion of Elementary education.
G.O. (Ms) No.189
Any child above 6 years of age shall be admitted in a class appropriate to his/her age.
Extended period of admission
G.O. (Ms) No.189
Extended period of admission shall be 6 months from the date of commencement of the academic year of the school.
Right to seek transfer to another school
G.O. (Ms) No.189
A child shall have the right to move from one school to another either within the state or outside for completing his or her elementary education.
Prohibiting screening procedure for admission
G.O. (Ms) No.189
No school should conduct any screening procedures while admitting a child.
Abolition of corporal punishment
G.O. (Ms) No.12
corporal punishment amendment to Tamil Nadu educational rules.
Awarding of completion certificate after completing Elementary Education
Ensuring PTR/Rationalizing the deployment of existing teacher
G.O. (Ms) No.231
Rationalizing the deployment of teachers done in Govt. and Govt. Aided schools.
Teachers in Govt. and Govt. Aided schools. have been deployed based on the rationalization by the Director of School Education and the Director of Elementary Education from the year
Sec.12(1) C, 13(1)
25% reservation/reimbursement in private schools
G.O. (Ms) No.9 & G.O. (Ms) No.180
From 2013-14 reimbursement made towards the fee claimed by the unaided private schools for the children admitted in class LKG and above as per the provision of this Act.
G.O. (Ms) No.178 & 179
State Common Board of School Education is declared as the Academic Authority under Tamil Nadu Uniform System of School Education Act, 2010.
Tamil Nadu Government issued notification to reconstitute State Common Board of School Education with 3 members from the academic experts and eminent educationist.
Constitution of the State Advisory Council
G.O. (Ms) No.7
State Commission for Protection of Child Rights constituted and addressing the grievances of children in Tamil Nadu
Officers authorized for the prosecution of offences punishable under the RTE Act
G.O. (Ms) No.81
Conducting Teacher Eligibility Test(TET)
G.O. (Ms) No.181
Teacher Eligibility Test is mandatory (TET) for teachers handling classes from I std to VII std in Govt. and Govt. Aided schools.
Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) has been conducted in Tamil Nadu from 2012. TET qualified teachers alone have been appointed in Govt. and Govt. Aided schools.