About 64,000 schools in Maharashtra are launching non-cooperation movement against the State Government. The school managements have decided not to make available the premises for conducting Standard X and XII examinations, to be conducted by the Maharashtra Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education.
The agitation has been planned because the government has failed to reimburse the ‘Grant Apart’ or ‘Post-paid Grants’ or ‘Non-salary Grants’, for expenses incurred for works other salaries of the staff.
These grants have not been reimbursed or paid to the schools for almost two decades. Even after the Court orders and order of former Education Minister Vinod Tawde, the money has not been reimbursed, putting the school management to hardships.
The School management also moved a contempt petition against the State Government. The grants were totally stopped in 2019 and the Government expressed its inability to reimburse this amount. The schools were directed to accept fees from the students. The students below 14 years of age are exempted, as they fall under the ambit of the Right to Education Act.
The ban on recruitment of teaching and non-teaching staff is another hurdle put by the Government. This is like directing a person to build a nursery of plants without water and a trained gardener.
With continuous failure in getting positive response and action from the Government, the Maharashtra Rajya Shikshan Sanstha Mahamandal, an association of school managements, has decided to take this step of not handing over the school premises for the Board examinations.
Ravindra Fadnavis of the organisation said that the issue is not related to school management alone. The future of students is at the stake. If hefty fees are charged, a large number of students from the middle and lower classes will be deprived of education. The State Government will be responsible for it, as it has failed to perform its duty to provide education to all children.